Teachers in one local district work to connect with students in person, online

Published: Sep. 8, 2020 at 6:12 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) – Some teachers in the Midway ISD are meeting the challenge of connecting with students both in person and online.

“The thing we lost (last spring) that we wanted to bring back was that teacher and student interaction,” Midway ISD virtual school Principal Dr. Becky Odajima said, and that includes more time for meeting with students.

“If they want to join as a class they can or they can request a one-on-one time as well,” fifth and sixth grade science teacher Keon Thomas said.

Thomas, like most of the secondary teachers in the district, has been teaching both online and virtually.

Her schedule allows her to dedicate one planning period strictly for kids who are learning at home.

“In that time, I am able to connect with them in their at home environment,” Thomas said.

Thomas says so far, the students have remained engaged; the only time she’s had to tell students to be quiet is when they get too excited.

“We have had to say ‘mute’ to a few students if there are multiple people on there talking,” she said.

“Other than that, they are all pretty good.”

Thomas says it’s important that she and all of the other teachers in the district put just as much effort into connecting with at-home learners as they do students in the classroom.

“We don’t want them to feel like they are punished because they are at home,” she said.

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