Teachers also struggle with online learning

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Lisa Kunst

Lisa Kunst, a math teacher at GBHS, is juggling taking care of her children and teaching her students during distance learning.

Since March of 2020, GBHS students have had to make the uncomfortable transition to online learning.

But the sudden change in learning affected the teachers just as much as students. Behind the Zoom camera and professional smiles, teachers are stressed like most students because they no longer have the same work environment. 

Many teachers at GBHS are parents, meaning they have to now balance caring and raising their own young and excited children as well as teach their students. 

Lisa Kunst is a math teacher at GBHS and a mother. In addition to the challenges of raising and taking care of three children, she has also had to care for her students and make sure that they are grounded in terms of both their academics and their wellbeing.

“It is an extremely hard balance to be (both) an effective teacher and a supportive mom … during this distance learning.” Kunst said. 

To help balance their children and students, teachers have resorted to letting their child watch more TV in hopes to be able to have time to teach. 

Jason Rath, an economics teacher at GBHS, has a three year old son who loves to play with his father, but while Rath is teaching or recording a lecture, he’s resorted to television to distract his son. 

“(I entertain my son by) putting on a movie or Netflix and letting (him) watch TV for three hours. (It) makes me feel like a terrible father,” Rath said.

(I entertain my son by) putting on a movie or Netflix and letting (him) watch TV for three hours. (It) makes me feel like a terrible father.”

— Jason Rath

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Teachers love to interact with their students outside of their academic careers as well, and as zoom classes are only an hour long, teachers are struggling building relationships with their students. 

“I miss just walking around the classroom while students are working and saying hi or asking about sports/activities.” Kunst said. 

However, aside from all of the new obstacles, working from home has brought some silver linings.

Both Kunst and Rath have enjoyed eating lunch with their families. Rath’s son also loves to make some appearances while his father is teaching. 

A positive externality of having (my son) at home with me is … that my students get to see that I too am struggling to balance my home life with my professional life much in the way they are with school, work and their families,” Rath said. “We are in this together.” 

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