Bringing Joy and Connection Back to Students

Students having snack in “The Clearing”- Photo by Alissa Alteri Shea

We could all use a little joy and magic, especially in the midst of a pandemic. That is exactly what we found when my first-grade class went down to The Clearing, a newly created outdoor classroom in the woods behind our school.


Remembering the Losses and the Gains

Photo by Yan Berthemy on Unsplash

It’s been one year since many schools in our country closed their doors due to COVID-19. One year since news of coronavirus spread through the streets and schoolchildren were told to pack up their backpacks, board yellow school buses, and head for home.

After School play dates were canceled; this was no time to play.


Going back into the classroom during a pandemic is not easy. Here are some ideas that will help both you and your students have a smooth transition.

Use flexible seating. Giving students a choice in what seating is most comfortable for them goes a long way in making the classroom environment more inviting.

photo by Alissa Alteri Shea

Have individual storage boxes for work and play materials to help students maintain physical distance.

Alissa Alteri Shea

Bank Street College graduate, Montessori trained educator, working to bring joy, connection, and learning to our public schools through outdoor education.

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