After teaching remotely this spring, Sunny Hollow teachers were delighted to return to school in person this fall. Faculty and staff spent much of the summer researching and updating safety protocols, redesigning classrooms, and preparing to safely teach in the Covid era. Despite the fact that many things have changed at Sunny Hollow in the past few months, students had a safe and happy return to school, thanks to the hard work of the faculty and staff. A number of classrooms shared brief glimpses of their first week:
Upper Elementary South:
We are off to a great start. We had a good week. The students are acclimating nicely to their classroom and the new school year. Every year I’m impressed with how eager the children are to work. The students are handling our new safety standards well, wearing their masks, washing their hands regularly and disinfecting surfaces after use.
Upper Elementary North:
While there were certainly a few kinks to iron out, overall it was a great first week. The students are getting into a groove in the classroom and the students at home are doing a great job of showing up and taking ownership for their work. I have really enjoyed giving lessons to each of the students and to see the work that has started already in the classroom. I got a chance to observe Friday and saw research, crochet, and woodworking. It was wonderful to be able to gather with almost everyone on Friday afternoon, to tell the first Great Story in the Temple amphitheater space and play some games together.
The first week was filled with slow releases of baited breaths as we got use to new routines and played around with routines to find the ones that seemed the simplest and easygoing. We have also enjoyed getting to know each other by sharing feelings and knowledge and laughs. We’ve even shared the new experience of interacting with some off-site Casa Lake children virtually. The children also seem to love taking ownership of wearing their masks responsibly and cleaning their own tables and space after eating or working. So much has been done this week that by Friday, children that don’t usually nap just laid down on their yoga mat and fell asleep.
Casa Creek has been filled with laughter, exploration and concentration. It has been a beautiful experience to watch the children come back to school, reunite with their friends and make new friendships as well. We are getting in the groove of things and the daily schedule is starting to feel more routine for us now. I am so excited for the coming year; it will be an incredible journey for us all.
Lower Elementary North:
Such a week of excitement and happiness has passed! The children were thrilled to be back together and making new friends in the community. Observations this week clearly showed the children truly missed both the connections with one another and being in the classroom. Only in opening a casa have I seen children so eager to touch and explore any and every material on the shelf!