For those of us that live on the Eastern side of the country, we’re looking forward to March and April and hoping that warmer, sunnier weather comes our way. Normally, in years past, March and April would be the time period that students would have spring break or a break for Easter. As a former special education teacher, I used to look forward to spring break. It was a time to spend with family and friends, get respite from work, and start planning for the remainder of the school year. I know the families of the students I taught always looked forward to having a little downtime to relax, take a vacation, or work on projects at their house. Taking trips to the beach or Disney World were always popular spring break trips among the families that I worked with.
This year due to the pandemic, your school district may have decided to forgo spring break altogether in an effort to minimize disruptions to your students’ routine. Recently, I’ve heard that some school districts, instead of giving students a traditional spring break might give periodic days off until the end of the year in an effort to curb the virtual burnout that many teachers and students are experiencing. Regardless of whether your school district is having spring break or not, this season of the school year can be challenging. We’re entering into the final few months of school and it’s important for educators to keep their students motivated.
The COVID-19 pandemic has been extremely difficult, especially for special education teachers. Students have either been attending school in-person, learning from the confines of their home virtually, or they’ve been learning through a hybrid model format. While it has been necessary to adjust the modalities by which your students are learning to keep both students and teachers safe from the coronavirus, there have been enormous disruptions to your students’ routines. When I talk with educators, there is one challenge that has been constant throughout this pandemic: its disruption to their routines. Continuity and consistency have been the glue that has held the academic environment together.
For special education students and students with varying needs, learning about life and social skills and trying to build them is a challenge. Maybe your students are on the autism spectrum, have an intellectual and developmental disability, a cognitive impairment, or an emotional disorder. Or, perhaps they just simply need extra support and guidance when it comes to daily life or school activities. That is why the Healthy Relationships Curriculum is the ideal program to support your students’ needs. It’s a highly adaptable program that can be taught both in-person or virtually. Our program includes more than 100 videos, lesson plans, role paying and demonstrations, and a comprehensive training for educators. One of my favorite parts about this program is that I get to work directly with educators, like yourself, and train them. I have the opportunity to walk them through step-by-step how they can utilize the vast number of resources that the Healthy Relationships Curriculum has to offer.
If you are in the midst of preparing your students for spring break, I hope you have a free moment to reach out to me. I would welcome the opportunity to hear about your students, and the ways that our program could support them and you.
All my best,
Jen Falkowski, M.Ed.