A Most Unusual School Year!

Everything about this school year
Screams UNUSUAL. Most unusual!
Classes normally commence after Labor Day.
New clothes and school supplies are purchased.
School districts all have different calendars.

Our neighborhood has many teachers who
must juggle when they teach from home versus
when their children take the bus to school. Child
care is challenging when both parents work. A new
German teacher dropped by to pick up some teaching


materials for his budding career. He plans to teach online
from Upstate New York to a school in Virginia.
Searching for posters to give him, I came across a letter
to our daughter from her former teachers in a combined third-
fourth grade class at a private, independent school.

How vastly different those days were as compared
with beginning school this year. The students kept guinea pigs
in their classroom. History projects, singing for birthdays and holidays.
Donning snowshoes for a field trip to Beaver Lake Nature Center
where they did some ice cutting on the lake. The Authors’ Luncheon


was a stellar event with parents as everyone munched through
thirty stories and poetry anthologies. Projects on pyramids,
papyrus, pharaohs, and Nefertiti, and of course, the process
of mummification. A service project with an African school,
closing exercises, goodbyes, hugs, promises to stop by
for a visit. Parents were praised for rearing wonderful

future citizens and wished a beautiful summer. We
encountered similar projects and events in schools
in Germany when I taught there, and our son and daughter
attended German schools and became fluent in German.
We hope that all students will return to school full-time.

They need the social interaction with others in a
nurturing environment. Retired now, I still love to
listen to neighborhood children tell me about
school, sports and trips they took over the summer.
They still leave us art work with chalk on our driveway.

Life is not normal as we once knew it but soon, it
will return. Meanwhile, we do our part to help the
young people stay connected with each other and
the older neighbors. From the dog walkers and
young ones in strollers, we still smile and greet them.


This entry was posted in Beaver Lake Nature Center, German Schools, ice cutting, Labor Day, online teaching, school year, snowshoes and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to A Most Unusual School Year!

  1. Emily says:

    Love this so much! Such amazing memories. Definitely going to be a different school year for all. A lot of changes and challenges ahead. Good luck to all! Thanks for sharing:)

    Liked by 2 people

    • Emily, thank you for your kind comment on my blog post. Change always is challenging. In the process, we learn to adjust as we move forward in life. Hope you have a lovely weekend. Once again, thanks. Much appreciated. oxox


  2. Peter Klopp says:

    As a former teacher, you made my heart ring with joy when I looked at the cheerful photos of students and you in pleasant classroom settings. I was particularly interested in the photo of the Albert Schweitzer Gymnasium. Someone is teaching German online to distant students. I wonder how that would work unless the students can virtually interact with the teacher. Have a great weekend. Mary Ann!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Peter, thank you for the insightful comment. Much appreciated. With the Albert Schweitzer Gymnasium, my German students and their students of English as a Foreign Language or Second Language, we exchanged pen pal letters, projects and some managed to travel to Germany and some of the ASG students traveled with their teacher, Marlise Kasper, to the U.S. Twice annually we held live video conferences lasting two hours in specially equipped rooms which broadcasted directly much as you see television today. We each had one hour to ask and answer questions in both languages i.e. students got to practice their foreign language. We sang songs, presented projects and for those two hours, we traveled to our “foreign” countries. It was the next best thing to actual travel there. There was much laughter as we worked through language differences and similarities. The entire two hours was LIVE interaction. Now that is something not in language textbooks. My students learned about Hitzefrei and the German students learned about our snow days. To use your words, you made my “heart right with joy” as well as I reflect upon those special video conferences. May you have an enjoyable weekend too. “”__””

      Liked by 1 person

  3. HAPPY LABOR DAY & HAPPY & SAFE BACK TO SCHOOL for everyone this year. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I really enjoyed reading your thoughts and reflections. You have a wonderful heart 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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