The pandemic impacts everyone, changing our way of life. It seems, in one night, the world turned upside down. Perhaps the most significant impact of this pandemic is with our schools. The students and teachers are unable to interact the way they did before. Working directly with students and teachers has brought a new appreciation to education. This project serves as a visual diary for me because I am fortunate to continue to work with students for in-person learning; however, it serves both as a blessing and hindrance. Stress levels are added to students and teachers to ensure the safety of both and maintain a steady education flow.
Teachers face students daily with a barrier and mask—the constant reminder of maintaining social distance and the gentle reminder from Mary to wash our hands. The fallen barrier serves as both a literal and metaphorical feeling to the situation at hand. These barriers are not sturdy, and the world is falling, barely hanging on. These details are to visually tell of the struggles that have become the new normal. Though each teacher offers support, they need to embrace positivity and endurance and look beyond the cleaning supplies and barriers. We are all working together to see that homework is getting done and that students have a safe, healthy, stable environment to grow and learn.
Molly Sheehan, 2021