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Hawkins schools' youngest learners aren't falling behind thanks to Pre-K homework

Jeff Bobo • Mar 25, 2020 at 11:15 AM

ROGERSVILLE — When Hawkins County teachers were preparing lessons for their students’ extended pandemic vacation last week, they didn’t forget about the school system’s youngest learners, who are learning the skills needed to launch their K-12 careers.

All 115 of Hawkins County’s Pre-K students have received the home lessons to cover what they’re missing in the classroom during what would have been the final two months of the school year.

Thanks to an online platform called ClassDojo, Pre-K students who have access to the internet also get to see their teachers from home on a regular basis.

Hawkins County Schools have four voluntary Pre-K classrooms (Mount Carmel, Bulls Gap and two at Joseph Rogers Primary), and two Special Ed Pre-K classrooms (Mount Carmel and JRP).

JRP Pre-K teacher Carrie Griffith told the Times News on Tuesday all six Pre-K teachers sent home lessons last week to keep their kids up to speed.

“We put together some hands-on activities for our kiddos to do at home,” Griffith said. “A little bit of math. A little bit of language arts. Writing. Science and some social studies. We also have been using a platform called ClassDojo, and that is where we can record ourselves and send them videos, or we can send them links.”

Griffith added, “We've tried to touch all domains. We're taking time reading stories, and we're posting them on Dojo for the kids to listen to. We're also sending them little scavenger hunts like ‘find something that's a square, find something that's a circle.’ We also made them up a goody bag. Each child got a bag of school supplies that consisted of crayons, erasers, pencils, glue sticks, some dry erase markers because we sent home some things you dry-erase on, scissors, and they also got a new story time book.”

If students were at school the last day that students attended on March 16, then they went home with their lesson packets that day.

If they were not there, then during the two subsequent days teachers were at school working after students were dismissed, parents could come to school and pick them up.

For the parents who weren’t able to come by, Pre-K teachers either took the lessons to their parents' place of work or delivered them to their homes.

“We wanted to make it where the parents have everything that they need to do these little lessons,” Griffith said. “We all are working very hard to stay in contact with our families, encouraging them to use the free lunches. If we see anything the community is doing, we've been trying to forward that to them. We're checking in with our families every single day on the ClassDojo platform.”

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