Teaching through a global Pandemic
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (WDEF) – With the coronavirus mutating and now sweeping through our younger, unvaccinated generations, teachers say it’s worse now than ever before.
“We all went into last year thinking it was going to be the most difficult year of our lives and maybe up to that point it was but this year has been so much worse because this new strain is hitting kids,” says Amanda Edens. East Side Elementary Teacher.
One teacher at East Side Elementary goes above and beyond to keep her students safe by sanitizing all desks, providing incentives for wearing a mask correctly, and even getting herself the Covid-19 booster shot.
“Last year I was focused on keeping them safe but the concern was more for my safety and that of my coworkers. This year it is how do I keep these children protected and still help them learn and help them move forward socially and emotionally,” says Edens.
Most of Amanda Eden’s students are under the age of 12 and are not yet eligible for the vaccination, but she is hopeful that the Pfizer shot will soon be approved for kids.
“We need to give them this and give them a world where they can go to school and let their stress be over. A world where they can just learn how to multiply and divide or critically read a passage and not worry about if I’m going to spread this potentially deadly virus to my best friend,” says Edens.
Edens says it’s hard to watch her students try to navigate this pandemic, get sick, and then try to understand what’s happening- it’s a balancing act between learning and beating the coronavirus.
“It is so much on teachers but it is so much more on kids because they are seeing what’s happening and watching it play out. They are so worried but also they are kids so they have to have constant reinforcements of ‘hey everything is going to be okay but while we get to everything, okay making sure your nose is covered,” says Edens.
Pfizer announced that they have submitted data to the FDA for full approval of the Covid vaccine for children ages 5-11.