Ms. Robert’s students began the year learning online. In spite of the challenges of not being in the same room they were excited to collaborate and explore social issues together. As speakers of other languages, Ms. Robert’s students developed English vocabulary as they explored social issues. The students said, “We learned about bullying, homelessness, and lonely elders. It was hard to decide who to help. At last we helped them all, because everyone was in danger from coronavirus.”
The students learned what viruses are and how they spread. They also learned how to protect themselves from COVID-19 and the importance of social distancing, and the importance of wearing masks. They learned from two community partners, the Ziegler Elementary School nurse, and Dr. Megan Harvey an Assistant Professor of Health Science at Springfield College School of Health and Sciences. Many of the students are new immigrants to the country and native speakers of languages besides English. Through this project, they gained confidence in their new language and began to speak, interact, and participate more regularly in class.
The students wanted to help the students and staff of Ziegler staff safe from COVID-19, so they decided to make a video to show the importance of social distancing and wearing a mask properly. Ms. Roberts says, “The video was shared with the school and families before students returned and on the first day of our school’s opening. Additionally, some teachers chose to share the video with their classrooms and use it for a jumping off point for a discussion on safety expectations at school and protecting our families at home.” Check out their PSA below!