The Mission of Hopkins County Schools
is to unite as one team
to learn and inspire.
Southside Elementary School created care packages for students this year with supplies like white boards, markers, paper, and more.
“All the teachers this year, our shirts say, ‘My Students are the Reason,’” said Sydnee Mills, 4th-grade science teacher. “Then, we gave all of the students a shirt that says, ‘I am the Reason.’ A lot of them wore them for the first day of school Zooms.”
“Our goal for the first couple of weeks is just building relationships,” she said. “It’s different when they’re here. The 15-minute time slots for picking up the care packages was used to build our relationships with the kids and the parents. We want to let them know we’re here to help, including dealing with issues logging in on devices. Please ask, we’ll do whatever we need to do.”
For Allison Starks, math teacher at Hopkins County Central High School, communication with students is key. During a recent faculty Zoom meeting, she received three phone calls, five Google Classroom messages, and two Remind messages from students.
“I am doing instructional videos,” Starks said, displaying a doc in her Google Classroom. “This is their assignments for the week. These are the expectations. It has our week at a glance. I create a video tutorial and then there’s an assignment that goes with it. This way, you can work on it when you have time. Also, if you’re coming to a wifi hotspot, you can do all that in one setting.”
“In the spring, a student sent me a message, ‘I’m doing these wrong. I keep messing up. Can you please help?’” she said. “So I went in and recorded an individual video just for her. That provided her with individual instruction in a distanced format.”
Shannon King, who teaches Spanish at Madisonville North Hopkins, wants to make learning fun for her students – even virtually.“We’re already having lots of conversations with them,” King said. “They’re excited. We use YouTube to make videos and we upload it on Google Classroom. We try to pose a question right at the end so they have to watch the whole thing, then they have to respond.”“This is my 20th year and it’s definitely different!” she said. “I’m just trying to maintain my positivity and energy, especially in the videos, so they can say, ‘Oh, that’s the Señora King I know.’ You’ve just got to keep on rolling. Just remember who you’re talking to. These are our students. They deserve to get our very best so we need to remember that, remember our audience.”