Getting back to school after Sandy

It is Saturday and I just got my power back last night. I was very concerned that I would be going back to work on Monday (still not a guarantee) without power. I am very concerned for my students as some of them may still not have power when we return to school. The question I am asking myself is what can I do to help my students adjust to school after this hurricane? My first thought is review of past material. I plan to start with some problem sets and group work. Maybe some Halloween candy will be a good idea as many have had the holiday postponed till this week. I will also look for a video or two on Discovery Streaming to support their content. I can then download them and put the videos on itouches we have at school for the students to take home (fully charged of course) and watch. I also know that homework the first few days my be difficult to complete. I plan to make allowances for that week depending upon the power outages my students are experiencing. I really don’t know what my students have experienced this week but I know I need to be sensitive to it. I would like you to comment on this post with your ideas. I think we could also set up some resources for the students in NY and NJ who were the hardest hit. When they do get power I hope our DEN family can provide the support I know they will need.



  1. Patti Ruffing said:

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Tom. I agree that we need to be supportive and compensate any way we can to help our students get back to normal as soon as possible. It’s great that you have iTouches that you can loan out.

    I am writing this Sunday morning and just got my power restored last night, but after seeing news on TV for the first time and seeing the devastation I feel like what I endured was a very minor inconvenience. I am hoping to give my students the opportunity to blog about their experiences and “tell their stories”. There are also so many teachable moments from this experience, even the opportunity for students (and teachers) to grow in empathy. It came into my mind that even as I slept in a coat that there were homeless people who deal with that situation on a regular basis with no hope of power being restored to make life easier, and no often no coat.

    A story quilt is a possibility, and I even thought perhaps of creating a glog to look like a quilt, with each square being a link to a student story or drawing or voice recording. Since I have students in grades 3 through 8 perhaps I would do one for each grade. Voice Thread is another possibility with students creating a drawing and then narrating an experience or even a message of hope for those hardest hit. Without power, technology resources are hard to use, but once the power is back, we can use technology to connect with and support each other.

  2. Tom McLaughlin said:

    Great ideas. I love the idea of the blog. I use Edmodo with my class and I will encourage them to post their thoughts and feelings there.

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