September 29, 2020 | Brent Harris
This has, in many ways, been the most unexpected start to a school year. Despite this year’s inherent oddness, the 7th grade students have been going with the flow in expert fashion. From the check point entry at the beginning of the day to the perpetual smell of disinfectant to the distance learners schooling from home, I’ve been remarkably impressed by how smoothly the 7th graders approach everything. Perhaps since this is during their particularly informative years, these students are prepared for any possibility.
Since it’s a weird year, the community building approach that we are used to is much different. Usually, I enjoy bonding with students and growing the community through games and activities, as well as casual conversations throughout the day. Since we are limited in what we can share and what space we can move around in, most of the class community building has come through conversations. I have learned that these students can, in fact, talk with the best of them. Sometimes a bit too much. But at the beginning of the year, too much is far, far better than not enough.
Here are a few things that I have learned about the students and that the students have learned about each other:
These are just a few things that I’ve learned about the 7th graders so far this year. The list could be much longer. We have such a wonderful group of human beings in this class, and I am so excited to get to know them better. I find that a good metric for community quality is the decibel of laughter reached in the classroom. If that were the case, I’d say we are doing just dandy.