Patrick Henry Post
Special Edition: Welcome to Virtual Learning!
A note of welcome and gratitude
On August 31st, 2020 we started what will surely be one of the most unusual years of our careers. We had our first day of school...but there were no children in the building! I cannot tell you how strange it was to be in our beautiful (and BIG) school without the sounds of laughing, happy, funny kiddos. Luckily, we were still able to connect with our students and their families through the blessing of technology. Our students were able to log into a new platform, Microsoft Teams, and experience their first dose of virtual learning. I am so thankful for every student, every parent, every grandparent, every aunt, every uncle, every cousin, every neighbor, and every friend who helped our students get onto their iPads and successfully log into their virtual classrooms. We know how frustrating the world of technology can be, but you did it! I am also so thankful for every teacher, every support staff member, every volunteer, and every community partner who made our first week of school possible. Did you know that we had over 20 people in the background at Patrick Henry making sure that everyone was logged into Teams and learning throughout the first week of school? That saying "it takes teamwork to make the dream work" might be a little cheesy, but it's never felt more true. I am so proud of and thankful for our stakeholders - you prioritized our children this week, and you made it possible for them to enter the virtual world of education. Welcome to the 2020-2021 school year, it is sure to be an adventure!
Week 1 Success Stories
Welcoming our Staff
Ms. Smith and Mrs. Ayeni greeted our staff members with breakfast and special welcome back treats during their first week of Professional Development. It was so fun to see our familiar faces and get to know our new staff members!
Enjoying the Personal Touches
Each teacher found a special way to reconnect with their students even from afar. Ms. Bryant's art kits are already being used by our students!
Ms. Jami's 2nd Grade
Welcome to our new 2nd grade teacher, Ms. Jami Fales! Ms. Jami comes to us with a wealth of experience teaching elementary school and has become one of our "Tech Twins" with Ms. Teska!
Ms. Versen's 1st Grade
Welcome back to our veteran 1st grade teacher, Ms. Karin Versen! Ms. Versen has already mastered so much of the new technology that she's routinely teaching others how to get all students participating.
Ms. Butler's 1st Grade
Welcome to our new 1st grade teacher, Ms. Demetris Butler! Ms. Butler has a rich history in the world of Special Education and is ready to jump into the general education classroom this year. We are excited to have her on board!
Ms. Teska's 2nd Grade
Welcome to our new 2nd grade teacher, Ms. Jessica Teska! Ms. Teska brings with her a Reading Specialist degree and years of experience teaching elementary students. We are so happy to have her on our team!
Ms. Wildermuth's Kindergarten
Welcome back to another veteran teacher, Mrs. Ashley Wildermuth! Her kindergarteners are already tracing letters, identifying shapes, and reviewing their prior knowledge from prek!
Ms. Williams' 4th/5th Grade
Ms. Ribbon Williams has returned to Patrick Henry for another wonderful year of upper elementary instruction, this year with fourth and fifth graders! Ms. Williams' students are already preparing for middle school!
Working from Patrick Henry
Ms. Versen is here connecting with her kids even though they can't join her in the classroom.
Ms. Hammock's 4th/5th Grade
Welcome back to Ms. Audrey Hammock, our upper elementary teacher for 4th and 5th graders. It has been awesome to see her students reconnecting with her and each other!
How did we prepare for virtual learning?
We worked (a LOT!)
This picture was taken at 5:30am. If you can believe it, when Dr. Rogers arrived at school, there were already teachers waiting to get into the building.
We got our staff ready on Day 1
Staff professional development can be exhausting! But we started off with a bang with Panera breakfast and some other sweet treats along the way to keep our staff encouraged as they learned an entirely new way to teach.
We prepared for our students
Each student received a personalized box with supplies, curriculum, technology, passwords, and goodies from their teacher to make sure everyone was excited about the school year - even in the virtual world!
We got a lot of new stuff!
These boxes were just for our PreK department! And amazingly enough, even more boxes were delivered after this picture was taken!
We worked together as a team
Our staff took on so many roles over the past two weeks. Our support team became the Geek Squad in so many ways, and prepared our technology for distribution!
We learned how to handle the tech issues
We are learning as we go this year. Every error message, blank screen, or tech problem is a new challenge for us. But thanks to our staff's positivity, we are meeting those challenges head on!