Because of COVID-19, this isn’t the school year that teachers expected. Despite the challenges of teaching remotely, teachers across the nation are stepping up to be the teachers that students and parents need them to be.
One of those teachers is Kendall Floyd, a graduate from the University of Mobile.
While this has been an emotional and wild ride for many teachers, Floyd’s gratitude for the opportunity to continue to teach her students stays high.
“This time has taught me so much about myself as a teacher and shown me exactly why God called me to this profession,” she says.
Floyd graduated from the University of Mobile in 2019 with a degree in early childhood education. She went on to begin her career as an Alabama First Class Pre-K teacher at Chickasaw Early Learning Center in Chickasaw, Alabama.
The Alabama First Class Pre-K Program is designed to get kids ready for school by focusing on literacy, mathematics, social and emotional skills like communication, cooperation and flexibility.
To adjust to the pandemic, CELC created packets to follow a specific theme for each week, with hands-on activities, ways to get kids moving, and ways to get them to be creative.
They have also posted videos online for their students to watch. Floyd has been reading books to her students via webcam. She starts off with breathing exercises and uses silly voices to engage with her students.
Floyd is finding ways to keep her head held high and her students engaged during this time. Part of her efforts include making a “mini-classroom” that looks familiar to her students. Even their class pet, Wanda the hermit crab, makes appearances in her videos.
She has found this time to be affirming in why she chose to be a teacher in the first place.
“I am proud to be a teacher during this time because it allows me to demonstrate that teaching is not a job to me, it is my mission. I’ve found that teaching is much more than what happens within the four walls of the classroom. My Christian worldview has shaped my response and my attitude during all of these changes. While everything may seem like it’s spinning out of control, I know my trust is in the One who is in control of it all. I serve a God who saw COVID-19 before we did,” says Floyd.
Floyd acknowledges that her Christian worldview also shapes the way she interacts with her students and their parents.
“Knowing that God is in control gives me a sense of peace and comfort that I am daily trying to pass on to my students and their families,” explains Floyd.
“I know I speak for most teachers when I say that had I known my last day at school was my last day, I would’ve hugged my students all a little longer and a little tighter,” says Floyd.