Safely Back to School: Helena Kindergarten teachers prepare

Safely Back to School
Posted at 3:42 PM, Jul 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-28 17:42:03-04

HELENA — There’s a lot of uncertainty surrounding the upcoming school year and for one Helena Kindergarten teacher she says in person or online, she will teach her students with the same passion and joy as any other year.

JoAnna Nelson has been teaching for 8 years, and she says this year, her Kindergarten class at Four Georgians Elementary School will look a lot different.

She added, “Sharing is caring in Kindergarten, but I definitely know this year will bring about some changes on how my classroom is run. I do and have in the past, had flexible seating in my classroom so I’m fortunate enough to have my students spread out.”

When asked about teaching Kindergartners online last spring, JoAnna admitted, there were some challenges.

She says, “It’s one of those things where teaching has always been in person and so being disconnected from your classroom and being disconnect from some of your families that are having technology issues or they just have busy lives, that parts really hard because we love our kids!”

As of July 28th, JoAnna still doesn’t know if she will be teaching her students online or in person.

Nelson says, “Things may look a little different, but kindergarten really is all about the joy of learning so I want my kids to have the love of learning that will carry them throughout their education and so whether that learning is in person or over a computer my desire and passion to do that will be the same.”

No matter what platform JoAnna uses to educate her Kindergarteners, JoAnna says she will be doing her best to stay in close contact with students and parents who are concerned about the upcoming year.

She added, “It will absolutely be vital for us to reach out to our families and ease their worries and concerns and let them know the ins and outs of what’s going on and so I just really want to ensure families that we are here to answer questions and work through all of this together.”

JoAnna is on one of eight different committees aimed at finding the safest way to bring students back to school.

She says teachers in the Helena School District have been working non-stop since the spring on formulating plans for this upcoming fall.

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