At Pathways we create all of our own curriculum and adapt lessons to fit the needs of our students. We aren’t restricted by state guidelines of what we can and cannot teach and have the freedom to explore any subject that interests our students. This freedom also allows us to share the word of God with our students and that helps a lot of us find peace during this time. While switching to online classes has introduced us to some new challenges, it has also introduced us to a world of possibilities we never imagined with students joining as from all over Oklahoma, different states in the US and even South Korea. Pathways has gone global and continues to fill our students’ days with enriching programming.
Our students love learning about animals: lions, tigers, penguins, you name it, there is a Pathways student who is interested. During science class this month students did some bird watching. Our teacher Josh led a lesson on making observations about the world around you and how you can easily sit at a window in your home and find something to look at. Students reported back that they saw birds hunting for food in the front yard and bathing in rain puddles. While our students aren’t looking out their windows and seeing penguins, they are seeing the world around them in a new way. With fewer cars driving by animals are being a little more bold and adventurous and it’s fun to observe how animals are acting.
Students are still enjoying their classroom favorites including music, fitness, and worship. Music is timeless and universal and so much fun. One of our teachers John or Abby will pull out an instrument and you can see a screen of smiles as they play different students’ favorite songs. Miss Chelsea jumps in afterward and leads a dance class that gets the blood flowing with students up and moving in whatever way works for them and the space they are in. To cool things down, Chelsea finds a playlist of everyone’s favorite worship songs like “Rescue” by Lauren Daigle and “Old Church Choir” by Zach Williams.
Next, Miss Robin leads a book club and students get in close to listen to their current book “The Lion, the Witch, and The Wardrobe.” They’ve almost completed it and are deciding if they want to go to the next book in series or try something else. The world is their oyster. Cooking classes now feature ingredients that are cabinet staples for most households. They are making themselves a Friday afternoon cheese plate or quesadilla and then settling down for a Bible study on gratitude.
While the space between us all can feel vast at times, the connections that we are able to maintain through technology is amazing. Parents have told us that online classes are helping students adjust to their new temporary normal and that is the best thing to hear. We can’t wait to see our students in person again, but we are so grateful that we can continue to contribute to them living happier, healthier, and more enriching lives.