Kate’s Corner: Kindergarten Teacher Gets Creative with Communicating

Being a kindergarten teacher is a dream come true for Mary Gail Clucas, and recently, for the first time in her 20 year career, she had to get extra clever with communicating with her students.

Inspired by her grandchildren, Clucas and her teaching assistant, Ms. Donna, used creativity to communicate with the students that she has missed dearly for the past three weeks as a result of the social distancing mandate.

“That first weekend that we started social distancing, my grandkids had come by my house and left  a message for my husband and me on the sidewalk,” said Clucas. “It caught me by surprise and I thought it was so cute, but it was also bittersweet because it made me realize that this was going to be one of our only ways of being together and communicating for a while. Hugs and kisses were going to be put on hold for a long time.”

Clucas used her grandchildren’s clever idea to spread joy to each of her 22 students, leaving cheerful messages on their sidewalks and driveways. Not sure if everyone would see the messages, she took it a step further and printed photos of them to share in their yearbooks.

“I did receive several emails back saying thank you and sharing how excited the students were when they saw their message.”

Some students were shocked to find out that Clucas knew where they lived and others caught her in the act.

“For me, doing this was definitely a form of therapy needed for having our school year put on hold so abruptly. I definitely miss their happy, little faces and their hugs. I miss seeing  them sitting and listening to stories at read aloud time. But I guess mostly it would have to be their enthusiasm for learning new things, these little learners are always excited for what was coming next.”

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