The 4th grader had been learning remotely for nearly a year!
One thing this pandemic has taught us all is that we really don't know what we've got until it's gone. When we were kids we would sometimes not want to go to school at all. Sure, we used to wait for the summer holidays to approach, but what would happen if we never had the chance to go to in-person school at all? One little girl's reaction is all we need to see to know how important going to school is. Clara Zanotto, a fourth-grade student of Redondo Beach School District in Redondo Beach, California had been learning remotely for over 358 days! Her mom Tarine Zanotto broke the news to her daughter that she could finally go to school in person on March 3 and the little girl's reaction will melt your heart!
"Usually her reaction is screaming and jumping and she had the opposite," Tarine Zanotto told Good Morning America. "She had the very emotional, deep cry." Clara had been through it all: studying over Zoom with a live teacher and through recorded lessons. Her parents tried helping her through recorded lessons but it was clear the little girl missed her classes. "She was staying positive," Zanotto said. "She was anxious at the beginning like most of us were in the beginning. She learned techniques to cope with her anxiety ... we went through therapy."
When I first saw this video come across our FB group, it was a story I knew was missing from the conversation. I shared this video because I wanted to remind everyone from parents, to teachers, to politicians, that getting schools open is about one thing – the kids.— Reopen California Schools (@ReopenCASchools) February 28, 2021
Despite the struggles Clara has done well in school over the last year, her mom shared. "She was able to do a lot by herself," Zanotto added. "We count on how she really loves school. That helps a lot." The Twitter account Reopen California Schools, shared the video of Clara's reaction when she found out that she was returning to school and the response has been overwhelmingly positive. "It's spreading the love and it was so cheerful to see the school alive last week," Zanotto said. "The sound of the little backpacks rolling and the kids giggling - that's everything," Zanotto said adding that Clara's now in a hybrid learning model and is so happy to be back.
As we can all tell by now, it's clearly important that children have access to a holistic method of learning. The American Academy of Pediatrics promotes measures to have kids back in school and also encourages schools to closely follow the guidance provided by public health officials. "Children absolutely need to return to in-school learning for their healthy development and well-being, and so safety in schools and in the community must be a priority," said Dr. Lee Beers, a fellow and president of the AAP. "We know that some children are really suffering without the support of in-person classroom experiences or adequate technology at home. We need governments at the state and federal levels to prioritize funding the needed safety accommodations, such as improving ventilation systems and providing personal protective equipment for teachers and staff."
i hate online classes. i hate remote learning. i hate that i cannot separate my rest space from my work space. i hate that i have to teach myself the modules. i hate hate hate hate hate it— idelie 😼 (@pukidel) March 8, 2021
Many students seem to want to get back to school. Sean, 16, a junior at Yonkers Middle High School in New York told NBC News, “I’m much happier in person. When I’m at home, fully remote, it’s more like a sluggish feeling,” he said. “I’m usually feeling distressed and tired and I just don’t want anything to do with school anymore.” A study from NBC News and Challenge Success, a nonprofit affiliated with the Stanford Graduate School of Education shed light on this issue. “Remote learning — and I don’t think this is a surprise to anyone — is just more challenging,” said Sarah Miles, the director of research and programs at Challenge Success and one of the leaders of the study. “It’s harder for kids to feel connected. It’s harder for teachers, for the adults in the school, to connect and that’s a foundational element. In order for kids to learn, they need to feel safe and connected. Everything else rests on top of that.”