Skip to content

School Visits and Covid

November 25, 2020

JOHN O’LEARY

I managed to squeeze in a school visit to Bredhurst Primary in Gillingham at the beginning of October but now with current restrictions these events are becoming rare.

I was aware of the need to make the visit Covid-compliant. Due to class bubbles a whole-school assembly was out of the question so instead I produced a mini version of my talk in video form in order to give some insight into my practice. It had the happy consequence of my being greeted by children on the day who seemed to know me already.

The card for the workshops was pre-packaged and then only handed out by the teaching staff. During the workshops, I did my usual thing, but at a distance, teachers did all the close up checking and helping. I made more of the demo part of the session where I turn a pop-up mechanism into a finished 3D spread using the children’s story ideas. And I made sure everyone had all the information they needed to finish the group pop-up books after I had moved on to the next class.

The school felt surprisingly normal but they had clearly put in many important measures to keep everyone safe – no sharing of equipment (I had to keep reminding myself not to borrow scissors or gluesticks), staggered playtimes and hand sanitiser everywhere. I also had to exit the building and make my way around the outside of the school to get from class to class.

It’s not clear when things will go back to normal but it’s been an opportunity to explore new ways of interacting with schools. Things like Zoom, for example, seem to work well and it will be a useful addition going forward, especially for schools further afield. However, it can never replace the wonderful feeling of interacting live with the children that I experienced at Bredhurst and all the other schools I’ve visited in the past.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 26, 2020 3:51 pm

    I really enjoyed your account of this workshop, John. It looks colourful, imaginative and fun. Well done you!

    • November 27, 2020 11:30 am

      Thank you, Rachel. I hope it won’t be too before our proper group meetings can recommence. Let me know if I can be of any help in getting you into the Skype sessions.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: