• Joey Lai

First day of school impression

We did it parents! The first day of school for 2020-2021 is in the books, and we managed not to have a rolling power black out. While it was a short day :) (1.5 hours), there are some great takeaways I observed. My 2 boys both started 6th and 2nd grade today, and here are some things I observed.

- Chromebooks did not fail! (well, almost). We had one moment where Cole's Chromebook froze during the Zoom meeting, and I was in the garage. We got the Chromebook powered down/reset, and were back in the Zoom meeting within minutes. For our little ones, it is going to be essential an adult is around because these issues are going to pop up. This makes it tough on homes where both parents work.

- We set up separate rooms for the boys to have their online class. This is much better than our setup in Spring where we let them work from anywhere in the house. Having their own space, clean, and free of distraction helped. I have seen dividers on Facebook if you need to put 2 students in one room, and it looked like it worked well for many families.

- Chromebook screens are too small! I ordered monitors for both boys so they have a larger screen to work off of. Both boys faces were 10 inches from the screen. If you can, try setting up a dual monitor to help so they don't strain their eyes. There are some great deals on for used monitors. Don't forget to check Facebook marketplace for used monitors as well. All it takes is an HDMI chord and you have a larger monitor.

- From the quick glimpse of class I saw for both boys, the teachers did a great job engaging on camera. I didn't want to be the parent in the background on camera, but I could tell the engagement was there. I love how my youngest son Cole said with a smile - "My teacher is really calm and nice".

- My son Austin said he already got a little bit of homework. This is awesome! Lets use our time to not only get to know each other and get use to the technology, but lets get some work done too! Kudos to his Science teacher for getting the ball rolling day one.

Remember - parents attitude and mindset have a large impact on the learning experience. If parents come off frustrated, say this is ridiculous, or openly complain, then that will rub off on our students. Control what you can control, and lets help make this the best learning experience we can.

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