Blog Posts

Day 54: Connecting with Families

Connecting with families during COVID-19 is tricky at best. There are no daily interactions and no face-to-face contact unless I meet with a family over Google Meet. Families and caregivers do not come into the building or the classroom, so they have very little information about what happens each day.

To help families understand what their children are learning, I make a video each week. Honestly, I began with a video so folks could put a face with my name. But then, I realized the power of two-minute videos as a communication tool. Each week, I make a video explaining some aspect of instruction. Some of these topics include how to support your child with spelling, tips for helping when a child reads an unfamiliar word, how first graders learn to revise, and how to hear their children’s mid-year self-reflections.

There is nothing fancy about these videos – no makeup, no special outfit, and no perfect setting. I prop my phone up on some books and begin. Sometimes I videotape in the classroom and show tools students use as they work. But other times, I videotape at home so families can see what I look like without a mask.

The funny thing about these videos is that I would never have created them if it wasn’t for COVID-19. I would have felt self-conscience about putting myself on camera. You know, I don’t worry about that anymore. Instead, I think of these videotapes as just another communication tool. The videos only take me a few minutes to create, and the feedback from families has been positive. Perhaps in the coming months, I will include the children’s voices. But for right now, I include these videos in my list of silver linings from living through a pandemic

Sorry, this photo of me is so large. I can’t figure out how to make it smaller 🙁

Happy Teaching!


9 thoughts on “Day 54: Connecting with Families”

  1. What a gift you’re giving to the families. Just a quick video/connection from someone who cares about their children and wants to enhance the learning experience. Kudos to you! Wondering what Day 54 refers to in the title of your post.

    1. After 25 years of doing professional development, I took a one-year long-term sub position teaching first grade. Day 54 is the number of days I have been in the classroom. Thank you for asking.

  2. Ah, videos. A game changer since the pandemic began. Prior to the pandemic, I would have never dreamed that I would use my own videos as a part of my instruction. I remember recording my first video to my high school students. I was SO nervous, but students shared that it was helpful to them. For me, too, it has become another way to connect with students and families.

  3. Yes I totally love this idea and so many of your precious ways of connecting. I should do this with my grand children to encourage them and love them more. XO

  4. I love this idea so much and have appreciated when my children’s teachers have used it. It’s so powerful!

  5. The video instructions are so much more personal than any written explanation ever could be. When we went on DL last spring and started making the videos my colleagues and I laughed that after overcoming the fear of the camera we might all become Youtubers.

Leave a Reply