April 10, 2020

School Is Still in Session

Linda Johnson has been teaching pre-K and kindergarten for the last 20 years. That in itself is something to applaud, because 4- to 5-year-olds are indeed a fun and challenging group to work with. 

The Pennsylvania public school educator, who attends the Blue Mountain Academy church with her husband and personal technology guru, Craig, transitioned to distance education about three weeks ago. As schools around the world have taken instruction to cyberspace to combat the spread of COVID-19, Johnson found herself having to get creative with her lesson plans for the county Head Start program for whom she teaches.

“Class” is set up in a small area of her living room where husband, Craig, tapes her teaching the day’s session to her public school children—14 in all. But that’s not all. “Miss Linda” also streams a second class live via Facebook for children of family and friends. This latter program, which she credits to Craig, has a Christian emphasis to it. 

“I start it with prayer and use songs and stories from many things I picked up over the years when I taught for Adventist education,” says Linda. The Facebook program currently ministers to 30 children with some streaming from as far away as Germany, the Philippines, India, and Brazil.

After prayer, Johnson conducts a calendar lesson helping these little ones understand how the week works. Since her “classroom” is very close to her living room door, she will open it and take a peek at the weather, inviting the children to see what kind of day awaits outside (at least in Pennsylvania). Then it’s on to the pertinent lessons of the day. This middle-aged writer hopped on to Monday’s class to join the fun and was tickled to get a refresh on shapes and colors and simple gardening (something I absolutely need help with). Johnson also does live crafts and snack prep for the kids to follow along with at home. The school “day” concludes with a story and song—favorites for children everywhere.

Johnson’s ongoing lessons and broadcast are a part of her job for the local public school system, as is regular communication with parents and her tiny pupils—something appreciated in these very challenging times where children miss their teachers and vice versa. Providing the Christian component to these sessions is entirely voluntary, but highly rewarding. Comments (from parents who do the typing) have all been positive and appreciative, which makes Johnson happy to keep going.

If you are looking for quality home schooling content for your preschoolers (that also buys you a few quiet moments to yourself), connect with Linda Johnson on Facebook, and join her daily classes at 11:30 a.m., EST.