It’s quiet inside my house. I hear the wind blowing through pines on the hillside. Distant chimes then stillness. The hum of the refrigerator. A gust. This pattern continues as the light fluctuates with passing clouds. I didn’t know the subtle changes my backyard experienced at this time of day.
I used to hear playground noise, the vacuum next door, and the sound of movement above me as I made comments on post-its, reshelved books, picked up the pieces left behind. At this time of day, I used to sit in the cocoon of my classroom, readying for the next day with books, charts, and papers.
Now, the clouds cover the sun, and my living room darkens. I turn the light on to click through the streams of messages. Google docs, Google classroom, gmails, school email, texts. All of these connecting tools give a false sense of feedback. At this time of day, I miss making a list of kiddos to talk with tomorrow. As we distance ourselves from our kiddos, the face-to-face, pen-to-paper interactions that are the heart and soul of the day-to-day teaching and learning cycle feel dearer.