Coronavirus scare: Teachers, administrators, and students turn to social media for traditions like storytime

Coronavirus

(WTNH)– It’s a new normal. One that includes students from the Saint Paul School in Kensington saying the daily Pledge of Allegiance on social media…and teachers from schools like Kennelly in Hartford going digital for storytime.

“I’m a principal at an elementary school right now and of course, the big piece is the relationships and connections we make with the kids,” explains Peter Fragola of Samuel Huntington Elementary School in Norwich. “We don’t have that right now.”

Because, of course, schools are closed down due to the coronavirus outbreak.

But, this dad of two is getting creative by reading stories like Piranhas Don’t Eat Bananas on Facebook. Recently, his son joined in on the fun.

“Does it calm nerves? Maybe,” he says.

One thing is for sure – the idea is catching on.

“Yesterday, we had about 300, 400 people that watched. It wasn’t all from my school. It’s been shared out, I’ve had parents reach out,” he says.

Fragola, author of a blog called Chronicles of a New Dad says his read-aloud also gives parents a break during this stressful time.

“People have been emailing and messaging me on my blog page asking, ‘Would you read this book for my son or my daughter really wants you to read this.’ So, that’s been fun, too,” he says. “In the end, I think it’s a way for society to stay connected and for me to share my love of reading with the kids.”

He says – be patient and live in the moment: “The best you can do is spend time with your kids, read and just enjoy the time you have.”

Fragola is going to try to read a book on Facebook every night until the kids get back to school and life, for all of us, returns to normal.

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