May 19, 2020 | Special Events

Staff Reflections on Quarantine 2020

by Staff

This school year definitely did not turn out as we expected, but we have been determined to finish strong. So, as we come to the final days of the 2019-2020 year, the staff reflected on what they learned or missed about PCS during quarantine. Here are some of those thoughts.

Summer Rosario – “This quarantine made me appreciate how firmly and deeply rooted PCS is. Even though so much was changing and swirling all around us, the community of the staff at PCS felt solid. There is so much teamwork, communication, and camaraderie among the teachers – the fruit of a culture that has been carefully cultivated.”

Will Goodwin – I realize how much I love coming to work each day and that a classroom is a sacred place. I have missed the warmth and fellowship of the PCS community. The computer is an insufficient substitute. I long for the three-dimensional reality of life at PCS.”

Denae Hornbaker – During quarantine and remote teaching, I have realized the value of the small moments with my students and the community that it builds.  I really miss the morning greetings, the stories shared at snack time, the high fives at the end of the day, and the smiles.  These small moments play a big part in establishing trust and relationships with my students that allow space for the harder conversations and deeper learning.”

Amanda Corbett – I appreciate that PCS is committed to nurturing shared wisdom through practice and repetition. This had always been most apparent during Chapel on Fridays, when I couldn’t help but smile as older students excitedly joined in to sing songs and recite poems they had learned back in 1st grade. Since being at home, it has been comforting to know that our students are still out there singing and reciting beautiful words – words that keep them connected not only to our PCS community, but to our world and our faith as well.”

Jill Curcuruto –The truth, beauty and goodness of PCS Kindergarten can NOT be replicated with a Zoom call and worksheets. Sure, you can use some Math manipulatives with your worksheet and understand that 2+3= 5, but it’s just not the same experience as when you and your friend pretend to be a bird and have 3 more Kindergarten friends fly over and land on the same “branch” to make 5 birds “in all” perched on the branch.”

Beth Lansner – I have missed voices together and in harmony. Such beauty came from students singing in parts at lunch or chapel. Those moments always stopped me and reminded me that we were united, joined together by common work and purpose.

Anne Smith – Being home, I have missed the choral voices singing and chanting at PCS.  I always start class singing with the students. We can do a version of that on Zoom, but I can’t have all of them sing at the same time, so I don’t get to hear and be a part of the voices singing together.

Norman Campbell –Milton, speaking of his blindness, has a memorable phrase: “human face divine.” I miss faces – human faces.  Laughing.  Or thoughtful.  Or perplexed – by some bit of knotty Latin. Or exultant – when they figure it out.”

Megan Cochrum – During quarantine, I have appreciated (and missed!) the rhythms of the PCS school day. I love how, in our class community, we discover deep truths through all the subjects we study. The rhythms of the school day help us do that in an intentional way, from morning recitations to discussions about literature stories to finding harmony in grammar sentences to times in chapel. At PCS, learning is not just about obtaining informative content through a list of assignments. True learning takes place by dwelling on the deeper truths of who God is and how we see Him in all the subjects.”

Katharine Savage – “This quarantine was a great reminder that simply completing assignments is not the end goal of our school. We were forced to experience, as an aside to our regular lives, what most students in Philadelphia must accept as normal every day. That experience has made me more grateful for the magic that happens when we are together. Our school culture is a beautiful force and being separated from it has renewed my determination and passion for the growth and forward motion of PCS.”