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English Class Goes Virtual

It’s so important to maintain connections during this time of social distancing, and our teaching team has been able to do that using WhatsApp, a video chat technology that many of our clients already have on their phones.

With in-person English classes no longer possible, teacher Marian Fox recognized the potential of this simple and familiar technology to reach our students. Working with a dedicated group of volunteers, she set up several small chat groups on the app to continue lessons.

Volunteers have enjoyed getting creative and using the backdrop of their homes as part of the educational experience. Dennis and Emma Sue talked about some of the instruments they know how to play, which prompted one student to break out his own guitar and play a song for the group. Jacob taught food safety using items in his own kitchen.

During a recent class, teacher Kari Moore practiced some basic phonics with her students while video chatting from her kitchen table. “We got a glimpse into each other’s lives as we heard each other’s children in the background or I paused class to fix the TV for my son and let my dog in from the rain,” she said. “We are excited to be back together again when we can, but in the meantime it is a delight to connect virtually.”

We are incredibly grateful to volunteers Elise, Jeanette, Wade, Dennis, Emma Sue, Jenny, Liam, Jacob, Mary Beth, Emma, Lauren, and Teo for sticking with us during this time of rapid change and experimentation. We could not do it without you!