Kids step off the bus on their way to the first day of school.

Buses, pencils, paper, markers, and glue—all things that mean school is back in session! The kids are very excited to be back in school with their new teacher and friends. They are ready to learn new things, go on field trips, play sports, and make new memories.

Teachers have prepared their classrooms for all their new students. They are ready to give all their knowledge and have all the fun they can. Last year was different and one that tested kids, parents, and teachers, but they all prevailed and came out on top. This year things are getting back to a more normal semblance, though they are still taking precautions due to COVID-19. Masks are to be worn inside at all times, though the kids can take them off to each meals and as soon as they go outside. Students and staff are also encouraged to maintain three feet of distance as much as possible and practice regular hand washing or sanitizing throughout the day.

This year the first three days of school were half days; the kids got out at noon, and the afternoons were open for parents and students to schedule meetings with their teacher to have a meet ’n’ greet. Second Grade Teacher Alison Coon-Azevedo says, “It's nice to have 20 minutes with each family where they feel comfortable asking questions and getting to know each other. It really sets the stage for the year of open communication and a team approach to each student's success.” This is a great way to build relationships with students and parents to have a positive start to a great school year.

With the somewhat off year last year, teachers are looking at doing more hands-on deeper learning activities to get kids more engaged and make up for anything they are behind on and to keep their growing brain muscles in use. Every teacher is finding new and fun ways to reassess skill levels of each student and to fill the gaps that didn't get as much instruction from the year before. As well, teachers are excited about is getting to sit the kids a little closer to each other than last year. They are still maintaining social distance protocols, but having the kids a tad closer gives them the opportunity of building a classroom community, a place that has support from other students and teachers.

Overall, the school year seems to have been started off in a great positive way which sets the tone for the rest of the year. We look forward to all the fun things to come from these amazing kids in our community, and the kids are eager to see what the year holds for them.