The pandemic has utterly transformed everyone’s daily lives. Adjusting to the new changes that have come with this school year have been hard for the students and even more so for the teachers.
While students were given two options: learning from home or coming on campus, teachers were not given such a choice. Due to their jobs requiring them to be around so many people a day, they have had to take certain measures to ensure the safety of their family members.
Vanessa Riley, an English teacher, is one of those who have been greatly affected due to the virus.
“I’m taking things week by week at this point and hoping that my family and I can develop habits and routines that will allow me to feel comfortable as soon as possible.”
Riley’s bravery and selflessness is evident to all who know her. From balancing both online and on-campus students, she also has to stay away from her family in the midst of this stressful and uncertain time.
“I live with three people who would be high risk if they caught COVID,” Riley said. “Because of this, I have moved out of my house to keep them safe from exposure.
Nevertheless, Riley has been working hard with the other teachers to help create a safe learning environment for her students. And, although she continues to trudge forward through the challenges of 2020, she said she misses the traditional classroom experience that she has become so familiar with over her years of teaching.
“I miss having my tables set in groups. I miss the organic discussions that we used to have. I miss being in the hallway between classes joking around with my friends and students,” Riley said. “I teach at the desk now, and that is something I am not used to doing. I just hope that my excitement and passion for my students and my job is still visible even with a mask, Zoom, and social distancing.”