As schools across the nation close their doors, one teacher is opening hers to provide daily virtual lessons for preschool and kindergarten students.
Meet the new Mr(s). Rogers. Or as we call her, Miss Papale.
My son’s teacher, Jacqueline Papale, teaches transitional kindergarten in the Santa Monica Malibu School District. Like many teachers, she’s now responsible for educating her class remotely, an extraordinary challenge when your class is made up of 5-year-olds.
As I scroll through Facebook posts from parents across the country, I can’t help but feel blessed by the extensive resources SMMUSD is providing. Our first day of school closures was (appropriately) Friday, March 13th, and by the following Monday, our teachers had prepared three weeks’ worth of materials for students to use at home. The district continues to blast emails, texts and tweets of resources ranging from educational apps, health guidelines, and meal pick up schedules to mental health resources for both parents and students. They are doing everything we could ever ask of them. And Miss Papale is doing more.
Since the beginning of the school year, Miss Papale has utilized Seesaw – a private app for teachers to communicate with parents – to share photos and videos from inside her classroom. Immediately after the district’s closure, Miss Papale started posting daily videos of activities for parents to do with students, in an effort to inspire her tribe of instant homeschoolers.
“I felt it was important to stay connected with my children and for them to see me. I am home, as all teachers and parents are, without an array of classroom supplies. I thought it might be helpful to create some daily videos of activities that parents and children could do together with simple household items. Through these activities, it is my hope to continue to educate, and more importantly, foster the wellbeing of each child who watches. Whether it be a time to smile and sing together, a time to learn together, or a time to just say, “Hello, I love you. I’m here.” It is my wish that the (very amateur) videos I create with my dog Clay and first time cameraman Billy in our colorful one bedroom apartment will provide some fun learning experiences, happiness, hope, and love in this challenging time.”
Miss Papale’s videos are now available on YouTube and Instagram for students across the country. New lessons are released daily in our Raise Instagram stories and archived in our “learn” highlight section.
We extend our deepest appreciation to the educators and administrators of the Santa Monica Malibu School District for their continued support of our students and community during this time.
What resources do you recommend for homeschooling inspo? Share with us in the comments!
Jessica Butler is the co-founder of Raise, stepmother of two, and adoptive mother of one. Prior to Raise, she was a writer on USA’s "In Plain Sight" and TNT’s "The Last Ship." She and her husband, writer/producer Warren Bell, co-created the Nick at Nite series "Instant Mom," based on her life as a stepmother. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and six-year-old son, Levon.