I Married an SLP: Part Trois!
Those of you who have read my previous I Married an SLP blogs are aware of one thing: that I have always been, and continue to be, in awe of my wife the SLP.
NOW MORE THAN EVER
And the pandemic has only served to shock and awe me even more.
My unbridled admiration is not limited to my better half: it extends to all of you SLPs, OTs, ESLs, EIs, clinicians, therapists, teachers and educators who work with our nation's little ones.
Especially now, as most schools remain closed and distance learning rules the day, what you all do is all the more important; keeping kids involved and engaged as much as possible so they don't fall any more behind than they already have.
And your challenge is not easy, it's a herculean taks for all of you.
Many (maybe even most) littles are losing focus and a good number of them are - let's be honest - totally over it.
VB is a true phenomenon.
Blank facial expressions, slumped shoulders and Zoom fatigue are real.
As Jamie Miller, the director of ALTA Behavioral Health, points out - "kids are just generally sick and tired of online learning and they may, in fact, even turn their cameras off, so they're not even showing up in class."
Miller also points out that "there's just nowhere the depth of stimulation that they would get if they were in person" and says that when you compound this with pre-existing conditions like anxiety or depression and learning disabilities, "a perfect storm is created."
From the safety of the next room, I am witness to this perfect storm on a daily basis as my sainted spouse interacts with her kids and fights (always in the sweetest way possible) to keep them focused, engaged and challenged.
I'm astounded and impressed with the patience she exhibits as some of her kids are flying all over the room and she buckles in to get them to sit in front of the zoom camera and participate in the sessions.
Lord knows I would probably lose it completely, or check out in a similar situation. I could see myself pretending to love the Zoom audio.
But not Yvonne and I'm sure not most of you.
You continue true your calling. You know, that desire you all have to help others.. with that perfect balance of understanding, love and discipline.
It always brings a smile to my face as I hear these adorable voices over a Zoom session correctly pronounce something, or make Yvonne laugh at a perfectly delivered kid-apropism.
It gives me hope that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
It makes me grateful for all of you who make a difference.
And it makes me so happy that I married an SLP.
Stay Safe out there and keep doin' what y'all do. We need you!
And Zoom fatigue can affect you guys too. So please take care of yourselves as well. Here are some tips for battling your own burnout from We Are Teachers.
Peter, SLPH (SLP Hubby)