The following is the opinion and analysis of the writer:
I have been asked what I have been doing as a teacher during the summer downtime.
Well, truth be told I have become a prepper. I haven’t dug a shelter in the backyard and stockpiled Yoo-hoo, Spam and toilet paper. OK, maybe an extra 18-pack of Charmin is in the back of the closet.
But I am a teacher, so I am always prepping. I don’t prep because the end of time is coming. I prep because I look to the future and I am optimistic.
I look forward to school beginning again. I look forward to my students safely coming back to the classroom. I do hope we get to restart classrooms safely and soon. In the meantime, I am practicing my stand-up routine in front of a camera. And I prep.
I prep lessons for streaming my classes online.
I prep lessons to teach in person.
I prep learning software that will let me stream and teach a live class at the same time.
I prep and practice my lessons in front of my son, a senior, and then throw that lesson away as he shakes his head and leaves the room.
I prep and record lessons for students who will be working to support their unemployed parents and will need to take the class off and on around their work schedules.
I prep how to deal with students that will come to school sick.
I prep how to keep all my students distanced but together.
I prep taking temperatures of everyone entering school at the beginning of the day.
I prep taking student temperatures before every class.
I prep disinfecting protocols between each class.
I prep by sourcing PPE.
I prep by sourcing material to use in my lessons.
I prep by sourcing disinfecting products.
I prep how to deal with the emotional turmoil students have with what is happening.
I prep how to teach a subject I know nothing about because there are not enough substitute teachers and if another teacher gets sick, I will cover their class.
I prep lessons in case I become ill.
I prep knowing something will happen that I did not prep for.
I prep so my students will have the critical thinking skills they need to build the great life they all deserve.
I prep for a better future.
I prep so I am ready to begin in August, no matter what school looks like. I am a teacher. It’s what I — what we — do.
Richard Moore is a Tucson educator.
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