I wish I could say I was a particularly spiritual child, but I wasn’t. In fact, I basically hated Sundays. It wasn’t the morning and evening church services I didn’t like—it was the in-between. My parents were quite strict about that time of the week: no play dates, no school work, no sporting events, no television, no eating out, mandatory naps, etc. These Sabbath day practices felt unbearable to me. So as soon as I was old enough to make my own decisions, I dropped most of them.
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With the sudden, unplanned, and in many ways dramatic shift to online learning in the 2019-2020 school year, many have asked the question: What impact has COVID had on student learning? This question has been hotly debated over the last two years. I have spoken with countless educators who all echo a common observation, regardless of subject matter or grade level: there has been a significant decline in student learning since the 2020 shutdowns began. Parents of school-aged children have likely seen and felt the impact of that school year on their children. Data and statistics to quantify what’s been dubbed the “COVID learning loss” are beginning to emerge.
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[Editor's Note: The following has been adapted from an interview with "The Art of Neighboring" co-author Dave Runyon on the "Navigating Your Child's Education" podcast for parents. Make sure to check out the full conversation here.]