MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As students are adjusting to life at home, teachers are doing the same, and many are preparing for a new way of teaching class.

Distance learning could begin in Minnesota next week, which would mean lessons online.

“The little check-ins. The notes that end up on my desk every morning. I miss that,” said Allison Marvin, a 3rd-grade teacher.

The Friday phrase in Marvin’s 3rd grade class has always been “see you Monday.” But that didn’t happen last week at Rice Lake Elementary in Maple Grove.

“Teachers are still here and we care about them. From there the learning can happen,” said Marvin.

Marvin and thousands of Minnesota teachers like her have been preparing from their own homes for life online. Reading and math lessons could soon be delivered via email and other avenues.

For this week, it’s about inspiring creative learning at home.

“Games. Games incorporate so many different skills, reading and math games,” said Marvin.

“I actually got an email with some pictures the other day from one of my students. My response was I miss the kids and I miss the chaos,” said Rhea Schwalbach.

Schwalbach is a 4th grade teacher in Norwood Young America. She knows there’s a learning curve for teachers too.

“We have the next two weeks planned out. We had to make videos for reading and for math,” said Schwalbach.

What she doesn’t want is for families to get discouraged. Mental health is as important as anything they’ll learn in the classroom.

“Their kids are going to be fine. They work hard when they are there so for a couple of months of their reviewing, having fun and being able to be kids it’s an important thing to keep that mental health,” said Schwalbach.

Many school districts are offering to pick up packets with learning tools the parents can get at schools if they don’t have access to online learning at home. In some cases, if the parents can’t get to the school, bus drivers will deliver those packets to their homes.

John Lauritsen

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