What is it like to teach students
Does the "home lesson" work?
The Bavarian schools have been closed since March 16. "Learning at home" is the lifeline and remains so for almost 90 percent of all students when the first grades are now being taught in their school again. How well does this "lifeline" hold up in practice? We let students from different types of schools and parents have their say.
Pupils and parents are welcome to email us their experiences ([email protected] - please include first name, class, type of school), which we will then add here:
"Learning only with favorite students"
Jana, 19 years, 12th grade, technical college, Munich:
It is very troublesome to get information from teachers. Some have not sent us any assignments at all, others only study with those who asked or with their favorite students. For example, a teacher did online lessons with the parallel class, but not with us because we are not motivated enough for her. She is probably glad that she no longer has to do anything with the lively students. But they also belong to our class. We don't get any answers to questions because the teachers themselves don't know how things will go with the school. I have little motivation and the feeling that the teachers feel the same way. Now school is starting again. We only prepare for the Abitur. That means school for two days. But there is only one hour of math. I'm scared of the final exam.
"I can do that already"
Anna about the online learning of her son Leon, 1st grade, elementary school, Munich:
Leon receives a two-week plan that he should work through independently with the help of his parents. No new material is conveyed, just repeated. That is of course boring and Leon is already finished with everything after a week. He then whines, 'I can do that' and wants to do something new. I don't want to slow him down in his eagerness to learn, he can do more. The teacher does not like that because she is afraid that she will then get back a lot of students with different levels of knowledge. Fortunately, the teacher sends lots of handicraft instructions that Leon can deal with. We are lucky that we speak German, but it is certainly more difficult for other families.
"No experience with crises"
Marion, Parents' Council, Munich:
For me, the whole discussion is about too much grades. The mental state of our children, who have not had any experience of how to deal with crises in their sheltered life, is nowhere mentioned. At our school there are some students who are completely submerged. Here I would like teachers not to blame everything on their own responsibility, but also to seek direct contact to see if everything is okay. Some families have existential worries, in others there are family members who belong to a corona risk group or who are ill, not every student has their own room, their own computer or can structure themselves, some escape worries by entering their computer world or crawl into addiction. I'm afraid that the socially disadvantaged, the difficult and poorly performing students will fall by the wayside.
"There is no information"
David, 17 years old, vocational school (in the primary vocational school year), Munich:
We didn't get a lot of teaching material from our teachers. There is hardly any help with the worksheets that we received online. But it's about new material that we haven't even discussed in school. When we had questions about work orders, we only got brief answers via WhatsApp at first. After several inquiries, we did receive help, but only on the day before the deadline. Most of them had already finished their work.
There is no information about internships that are still required or how things will continue. We don't know where we can reach our teacher: Communication runs in parallel via WhatsApp, email and our school platform, on which everyone can upload contributions. But that only works partially and you have to log in again every time. When a student asks a question through this platform, they can read the teacher's answer. The rest of the class, who may be facing the same problem, often doesn't notice it at all.
"I work much more effectively and faster"
Anna, 14 years, 8th grade, high school, Pasing:
Overall, I think lessons at home are good, even if I miss my class and actually the school itself. All of my teachers send a lot of material, either via mebis or email. Sometimes it's too much because the worksheets are repeating and I don't know what is really important and what is just the repetition. But it is absolutely positive that I can organize my time freely. I work much more effectively and faster there. And I have time for my notebook entries, which I can then really design in the way I like and how it is most memorable for me.
"I have to be more disciplined at home"
Rebecca, 18 years old, high school graduate, Pasing:
For me, homeschooling is actually fun because we tend to get few assignments and often only have to send them to the teachers voluntarily. Nevertheless, I can use the tasks well if I want to deepen something. So learning is much more targeted and possible with personal weighting - I like that very much. However, I quickly realized that the motivation at home is different than at school. At home I have to be a lot more disciplined not to put off my tasks.
"We get explanations"
Philipp, 11 years, 6th grade, secondary school student, Munich:
We regularly receive work assignments from our teachers. Later we also get the solutions, we can use them to correct the work and send it back to our teachers. We have more homework than usual. When we have new material, we get an explanation that we copy in our notebook at home. If I have any questions, mom or dad will help me. Before Easter we were told that after the holidays we would be writing three school assignments in math, German and English. But we don't yet know when that will be. I especially miss the physical education classes, which I like very much.
"I'm always looking"
Lukas, 17 years old, 12th grade, technical college in Munich:
The teachers are totally disorganized among themselves. I get jobs through six different channels. This ranges from email via Whatsapp to Mebis, Webuntis, Zoom or Skype. I'm always looking around to see where something has come back. I also have access issues. Sometimes the password doesn't work anymore and then I can't get into the platform. It takes too long for teachers to answer. I have no direct contact with the teachers. Calling is not possible, just writing emails. Only two teachers offered video conferencing. But not all of the students took part. To this day I haven't heard from some teachers. I do not feel prepared for the technical diploma at all. I have the feeling that some teachers don't really care about the students.
"That actually amazes me"
Julian, 16 years, high school, Munich:
I had absolutely no expectations of homeschooling and therefore cannot compare what should actually come out of it. My teachers send work orders by email or via mebis. But everything is very limited, and many subject teachers have not yet sent anything. I am actually surprised. Lessons via Skype or similar do not take place. The reason given was that not all households have the necessary technology. But that's not the case for our class, as far as I can tell. We all have at least one smartphone. So maybe the teachers are not appropriately equipped or do not dare to approach the "new medium"? No idea.
"I'm looking forward to the letters"
Ayse, 11 years, middle school, Munich:
My teacher sends us letters regularly - roughly three times a week. They are written very lovingly and always have math worksheets and such with them. For me the letters are great. I find them very personal and I always look forward to the letters. Of course, our teacher wants us to write back to her and fill out the worksheets and send them along. I take my time for it and also make a lot of effort when writing back. After all, my teacher should also be happy about me and my letter.
"I can't learn new things alone"
Lisa, 12 years, 6th grade, grammar school in Germering:
There is a lot that I have to do. All teachers send assignments by email. My parents have to print it out for me. Homework even comes up in arts, music, and sports. For example, I have to paint a picture or jump rope. It's very stressful. I often do not understand the material in the main subjects and cannot learn it on my own, especially if it is new. My mother helps me with maths, I have tutoring on the phone in English, but I have to do Latin on my own. In English, the teacher always writes to a few students who should send something back to him. It's kind of like questioning. In computer science we have to work out a presentation in pairs, but it doesn't work at all well on the phone.
"I don't think that's so bad"
Simon, 15 years, 8th grade, secondary school in Herrsching:
In the first three weeks of homeschooling there was almost nothing from the teachers. Now we get a weekly schedule for the main subjects German, English and mathematics once a week. I do math with my mother, in German the subject is "reportage" at the moment. I work that out myself from the textbook. In English we just repeat. But I only have to return the tasks in German and English. In math, it's optional. The orders are sent via the school manager platform. I don't think it's all that bad. For me it's less stressful than usual.
"I am looking forward to school"
Nick, 16 years, 9th grade, middle school:
In the beginning everything was very different from normal lessons. The teachers told us on the last day of school what we should learn at home during the time. That is why we had to take all books and notebooks home with us. The teacher emailed me new tasks every day, which are very important for the qualification. I then emailed the completed tasks to my class management on the next day or the day after that. For the first two weeks, my teacher kept calling me and asking if everything was okay. At the beginning I was afraid that I would not make the qualification because of the mess. Now I am happy that I can go to school again.
"The teachers are available to answer any questions"
Janina, 11 years, 5th grade, high school:
Every Monday we get a weekly schedule that is divided into daily tasks. We get assignments for every subject except music. I don't feel stressed out and I get along well with the tasks. I get help from my parents if I don't understand something, and the solution sheets also help me to see where I've made mistakes. We don't have to send anything back, but the teachers are available to answer any questions. Our math teacher wanted an email asking if we could solve the problems. The teachers often write nice letters. The crowd is ok, I still have enough free time. Most of all I miss my friends.
"Some things get mixed up"
Julian, 9 years, 3rd grade, elementary school:
Our class teacher sends us a lot of math problems, it's all new material. I was very happy that she recorded two explanatory videos for us so that I could understand the new material well. She also sent us funny youtube videos. My dad helps me with maths. In other subjects we get the tasks mixed up, we have to repeat a lot, but we also get new material. Not all teachers send us great weekly schedules like our math teacher. I miss physical education and my friends very much. My mom sorts the exercise sheets for me so I know what to do on which day.
"I'll be done in no time"
Florian, 13 years, 8th grade high school:
Our teachers are all quite old and that's why it took them a long time to get it done with Mebis and the Internet. Now they send us all the more for it. But I don't care, because then I'll just hurry up and finish even faster. What I miss most is soccer training. And my best friend. Mom suggested we could go jogging together, but I don't feel like doing that. I don't want to go out, I want to play Wii with him. But that is not allowed. Because we knew we'd be home for a long time, a lot of us boys shaved our heads for fun.
"Hopefully the exam will be easier"
Kati, 15 years, Berg, 10th grade, secondary school:
I am now doing my secondary school leaving certificate and have thought a lot about whether we will have any disadvantages because of the school closure. At first I was of the opinion that I would be better off than others because I am actually hardworking and know many others who do nothing. But unfortunately I noticed that it doesn't work as well to study all day as I intended. Monday / Tuesday is still pretty good and the rest of the week less and less. What I'm most afraid of is the “Speaking Test” in English, because there we hardly have any time to practice. Will they take it into account in the final exam? For me, school is starting again now. Finally another structured day and more pressure to learn something. Our class is divided.
"Everything is so far away"
Alma, 16 years old, 1st year of preparation for high school:
At first I was still fully in line with the school rhythm and very motivated, got up at 7.30 a.m. and studied for three or four hours. Our French teacher is good, he has done video conferencing more often from the start and now the best thing is to see the classmates. But it was stupid, for example, that the math teacher simply sent the tasks along with the solution and said he didn't need anything in return from us. If you don't have any compulsion, you do it very late or not at all. In general, it is very difficult and it takes forever to teach yourself grammar or math. Now I'm getting tired of studying alone. Everything is so far away, the school and the teachers. It is also no longer so important to me to send everything on time. Every day is the same. Gamming and watching Netflix are no longer fun either.
"Great, no exes"
Thekla, 15 years, 9th grade, high school:
No questioning, no exes, no homework - life is much less stressful than at school. I get up at half past eight and have breakfast for three quarters of an hour, then I study for two or three hours. The math and chemistry teachers sent in explanatory videos, which was great, because I wouldn't have understood that much just learning with the book. Our English teacher didn't say anything for three weeks and then it was said he didn't know that the delivery of the assignments hadn't worked out. Now he has sent everything at once and we should have it ready in a week. Our class teacher is quite old and had to practice such a video conference first. But it was very nice that she asked us how we were doing. And that the next German school assignment is canceled.
Thea, 20 years old, student teacher in Munich:
I'm in the 2nd semester. The fact that you have to study alone without direct contact now bothers me a lot. All seminars take place online. However, what you accidentally overhear from the other participants is often very funny. A fellow student looked at the bed behind her. At first the duvet lay there very still, then after ten minutes it began to rumble strangely. Probably the friend was still underneath. And one of the lecturers had switched the camera on too early and then went out again briefly. That's when we saw his baby. It sat tightly strapped in the high chair, had a bib around its neck and its cheeks were still stuffed with porridge. When the baby suddenly looked into the faces of 30 of us, it didn't even know what was happening to it and was completely stunned with astonishment.
"Communication with the school is often difficult for parents"
My son is attending the 4th grade elementary school, from the point of view of the homeschooling front for elementary school students it currently looks like this:
There are first steps towards using platforms such as MEBIS and Schulmanager Online. Unfortunately, these are not stable and cannot be traded alone for younger students, i.e. parents or older siblings have to provide constant support.
There are few offers for direct communication with the teachers for the children, often none at all.
The children increasingly show signs of depression and lethargy.
Other useful measures such as video conferences, tutorial videos, etc. are very dependent on the individual school. Ours strictly refuses to try something like this as long as there are no binding guidelines from the KuMI.
Communication with the school is often difficult for parents, and parents' councils are sometimes overwhelmed with the task. For example, I only got an answer from the school after I had asked the school authorities for help (they were really very nice and took care of them immediately).
In my opinion, there is still complete uncertainty regarding the implementation of the 150 euro grant for equipment for each child.
There is also no meaningful, sustainable concept for linking online schooling and partial face-to-face teaching, which will start again at some point. How should parents plan reliably with regard to their professional activity if it is completely unclear when children can be in school and / or after-school care and when they have to be looked after at home?
As a final aspect, I would like to point out another important topic that has not yet been addressed anywhere: The children also suffer from a severe lack of exercise, even with good will, parents can replace a sports club that is not missing, school sports and simply running around with friends. Instead, the kids sit much more in front of various media. Solutions must also be found for this, assuming that we are assuming that restrictions will continue for several months!
"Children withdraw into the digital 'game' world"
I am no longer affected, but in my environment I see more and more children withdrawing into a digital "game" world. You cannot be motivated for school. Was it worth it? Every year we have 8,000 deaths in the household, 3,000 deaths on the road, but we are not capable of any car limit. But we can close schools and holiday care with the stroke of a pen.
Statement by a fourth grader: "I have a right to education" - from the Charter of the United Nations. That was the subject matter of Mardi Gras. Apparently something gets stuck with the students.
"I always have to play alone in the garden"
Helene, soon to be 2 years old, crawling group in the parish of Leiden Christi, Munich:
It's great that my dad is at home every day and plays with me when he finishes work. Mama is always there anyway. Once a week she turns on the smartphone, then I see my friends from the crawling group and we do handicrafts together. Unfortunately, I am not allowed to go to the playground in our settlement, but always have to play alone in the garden. I think that's stupid because I get along very well with the other children. I'm jealous of the older children in the neighborhood, who are already allowed to go out on their own, but mom and dad still think I'm too small and always want to come along. For this we visit the chickens on the chicken mobile or the ducks on the Würm every day. I miss my grandma and grandpa, even if they call me every day. I would love to let them hug me again.
(Helene doesn’t go to daycare or school yet, but she’s also made experiences with the loss of the usual daily routine. That’s why Johannes Wieser told the story for his daughter).
"There can be no question of comparability"
At the beginning of April, Brigitte Smith sent a letter to the Bavarian Ministry of Education and Culture and the government of Upper Bavaria and to the headmasters of her children's schools, asking them to waive final exams this year because of the unequal conditions in school education caused by Corona and to lay down the basis for appropriate diplomas . She tells:
Only the rector of the Friedrich-Oberlin-Fachoberschule answered me. Further feedback is still pending. Our children attend the 9th grade (Montessori School) and the 12th grade (FOS). The final exams are due for both young people and after the experience of homeschooling and the partial resumption of lessons with minimal hours, the meaningfulness of this measure is completely in question. In this exceptional situation, there can be no question of comparability with previous years. I still ask myself why the health and resilience of our children have to be put to the test under completely unequal conditions in exam situations? Whose interests are in the foreground - certainly not those of the students and teachers.
"Chilled high school graduates"
Katrin, teacher at a grammar school:
I teach geography. My high school graduates who want to do a colloquium came into their first lesson in Corona quite chilled. It is very important to me that they do not do any worse than their predecessors because of Corona and the week-long absence from the exam. I put together a collection of material for them and told them what to look at intensively. The girls wrote like crazy, the boys just sat there. Only when I said, "Now I'm going to say what's next so clearly, and you don't even get the pen out," some of them took it easy. The hard work in the lower and middle grades was so-so during homeschooling. Half of the students never gave up their assignments. I wrote to them one by one via the online platform every week and asked them, it was pretty tedious. As I retire at the end of the year and am part of the risk group in terms of age, I no longer have to teach personally in the class.
"My teacher calls sometimes"
Melanie, 3rd grade elementary school:
Either my teacher or the post office will bring me the documents for studying at home, printed out, over to me. I get my documents every Saturday for the whole week and then have a work schedule for each day. Mom then brings my edited documents back to school whenever I have finished my homework for the week. My teacher sometimes calls to see how we're doing. When I have questions, my mom helps me. I don't find it that complicated, in the first few weeks I sometimes pushed my homework, but now I do it quickly and I need two to three hours every day. I miss my teachers and friends the most and I wish school started again soon.
"I miss school very much"
Markus, 3rd grade elementary school:
My class teacher emails documents every day and my parents print them out for me. We organize everything in a folder that we hand in at school. There is a pick-up and delivery service at the entrance, where the folders are sorted by class so that the teacher knows what we have understood and what not. Sometimes we are sent a film on HSU topics. I also received a run-you-fit pass so that I can get enough exercise. I actually find learning at home totally stupid, I can concentrate better at school. I miss school very much.
"It works fine for me"
Lea, 7th grade, high school:
We have a teacher who has created a website and all teachers can post the assignments and we can access them there. In the beginning the server was sometimes overloaded, but since my teacher reprogrammed the page there have been no more problems. I print out my sheets and work on tasks in my exercise book, then I send back a photo of my work. Many assignments are sent back to the teachers and sometimes we get corrections back. My big brother is in 9th grade and has video conferencing with his teachers. I don't have video conferences, but I did email my French teacher once. Most teachers offer contact via email, there is a chat function on the website, but I haven't used that yet. Learning at home works very well for me, I don't need a lot of help from my parents, sometimes I do math with my grandpa via video chat. Grandpa does the same with my cousins and my brother. Most of all, of course, I miss my friends.
"I can do most of it alone"
Ramona, 7th grade, secondary school:
For me, learning at home works pretty well. The school has set up a website where every teacher has a folder where I can download the documents. It's now well structured and I have a good overview of my documents. We don't edit anything online, sometimes there are worksheets to print out or notebook entries to copy over. I often get tasks from my workbooks and workbooks to work on. If you have any questions, we can always contact our teachers via email. A teacher offers video consultation hours. I can do most things on my own, but when I need help, my parents help me. Most of all, I miss my friends and the class community.
"Postcard from the director"
Alma, 16, Secondary Education:
I go to a school where you can do the Abitur in the second education path. It's a very small school, with only six or seven classes. The other day the director sent each of us a postcard home. The headline was "Save the Date" and a nostalgic classroom like 100 years ago was shown. He wrote that we can go back to school on June 15th and that everyone is looking forward to seeing us. That was really cute. I'll keep the card in memory of Corona. It's still a long time until the 15th.
"The teachers are as always"
Maja, 16 years, 10th grade secondary school:
Because we are doing high school, we were the first to go back to school. It's funny when the school is so empty. Each class has its own toilet and everyone is only allowed to go individually. During the break, the teachers lurk that we adhere to the rules of distance. We graduating classes were divided and had full classes since Easter. But now more classes are coming back to school and then we have a day off, because otherwise there won't be enough rooms. The teachers are no different than usual.
Classes with iPads are quite normal here
Hanna, secondary school Gauting:
We get a new work assignment in each subject every week. It then works in such a way that we receive the messages from our teachers internally on our RSG platform and find the associated work orders on DS-File. We can download them to our iPads and edit them and later put them up in a specific drop-off folder.
The amount of work orders always depends on the subject; Math, German and English a little more, in the minor subjects tended to be less. If we have problems we can write to the teachers directly and say that I need a little longer, I will of course make up for it, I still have some problems with it.
I do think that you have learned something through self-study. What I actually missed were the teachers, who explicitly explained it again. But sometimes we would have an online conference with teachers and they would replay it. Our teachers make it clear again and again that we can turn to them in the event of any kind of grief.
The Staatliche Realschule Gauting was one of the first schools in Germany to systematically use iPads in lessons. She now has several years of experience with it.
"New instructions every day"
Sabine S., teacher at a special school in Munich:
At the moment I'm only doing emergency care because my class won't come back until after the Whitsun vacation. First of all, it will be a matter of "catching" the eight-year-olds again after three months without lessons and getting them used to sitting still. That's the worst every time after the summer vacation, and I'm already dreading it. I have great concerns about how much material we will still manage by the end of the school year and how it will be possible to get the weaker ones back on board. For homeschooling, I prepared assignments for the students every week. I drive the parcel every single one of them home and hang it on the door of the apartment. In the meantime, except for a few cases, the response is working very well. I think that's great because I know that a lot of parents can't take care of it because they are at work or work night shifts. Once a week I call the children to ask how they are and whether they are getting on with the tasks. However, it is not possible to get in touch in all cases. Some families feel disturbed. The school is quite hectic and there are many discussions on how best to implement the regulations. Every day new instructions come "from above" and often everything is different the next day.
"It's going very well now"
Ulla Siebert, Rector of Primary School on Droste-Hülshoff-Straße:
"Learning at home", as it is called by the Ministry of Culture, had to be brought into being at relatively short notice. With the support of parents, we organized password-protected access for the classes. On the first day, all the children, and above all parents, plunged into the homepage full of enthusiasm, and the system collapsed. We learned from this, and things are now going very well. In addition to assignments and materials, audio and video files have been uploaded to the learning accounts. Now the school begins for our grown-ups; the classrooms were prepared for a maximum of 10 children, each with a table and chair. Lessons are staggered, the children have 3 hours of lessons, all "nice" subjects such as sports and art and music are not possible for the time being. The popular break is also reduced. Nevertheless, the children and we are happy that things are going again. Our youngest start next week - we are very excited.
Frank Bernhardt, deputy Spokesman for the parents' council, elementary school on Fürstenrieder Straße:
The break from everyday school life shows everyone involved how little digital tools and content have found their way up to now. Parents and teachers, and above all politics, were caught off guard by the real demands of the "school at home". What offers some families or teachers a welcome change, presents an ordeal for others - organizationally, financially, physically, emotionally. Failures in modernizing our school building are also reflected directly in the inadequate sanitary, technical and didactic possibilities to cope with the current challenges. Parents and teachers will therefore continue to need courage, creativity, flexibility, willingness to learn, commitment, faith and patience so that not only our children but also ourselves can get through the crisis well.
Philipp Volkmer, Realschuldirektor Carl-von-Linde-Realschule in Westend:
I am glad that there are students in school again. A school without children is a bit bleak, now there are voices and laughter in the house again - how nice! You can feel that many young people are very grateful to be here again. All classes are divided or divided into three - so the classes are taught in small groups, which is not only part of the hygiene regulations, but also good for the upcoming final exams. But it is demanding, especially for the children who have to spend the breaks in their classrooms, have little exercise and still need to concentrate. Teaching with a face mask is also tedious for the teachers. Since the classes are divided, a lot of lessons come together. There is also online training for the lower grades. We are very excited to see how things will continue.
"It's not how it should be"
Eva Wobido, principal of the elementary school in the Freiham education campus:
“Learning at home” sounds very tempting in itself. Our young, motivated teachers are committed to the new media possibilities with lots of great ideas, create learning videos or tasks that can be solved digitally. After a while, however, you notice that not all students can cope with this offer equally. Some families also lack the equipment, especially when several children (and also the parents in home offices) have to work at home at the same time, with others the network is simply overloaded.
The learning tools are - even if laptops are obtained - not all students familiar, so that after more and more weeks more and more familiar measures had to be used. The pupils or parents get their familiar workbooks on a weekly basis, work from the textbooks and regularly send "their" teachers the completed tasks or throw them into "exchange boxes". So it is possible for everyone to complete the tasks. Those who know their way around and also enjoy it, also use digital offers.
Here in the west of Munich there are great networks, the education office and services offered by various advisory institutions. No child should get bored. Even so, learning at home is not the fun we were hoping for. It's not what it should be. Because the most important thing is missing: the close relationship with the teacher. Some miss school.Even more students miss their classmates. But everyone misses their teacher. Even if the prospect of a long distance without close contact with friends, wearing a face mask and possibly staggered in time compared to previous school life does not seem very tempting, the only important thing for most is: When can we finally go back to school?
"A great burden for the families"
Sonja Maier, Chairwoman of the Parents' Council, Primary School on Schrobenhausener Straße:
"During the first 3 weeks of homeschooling, the families were largely left to their own devices with the work assignments. The material reached us by email and then we started - more or less effective depending on the family situation. Wishes and suggestions that the parents brought to the school management were implemented in a very cooperative manner. There was direct exchange between teachers and children by email or telephone; if necessary, the materials were printed out and hung at the school gate for collection. The use of digital offers such as video conferences or instructional videos was sparse because it could not be ensured that no child would be left out. Everyone agrees that homeschooling is a huge burden on families. We are therefore very much looking forward to the gradual return to face-to-face teaching!
There is a lack of equipment
Susanne, telephone education advisor in Munich:
I keep getting desperate calls from parents who have difficulties with homeschooling because they don't have the necessary technical equipment. There is no laptop in the family, there is only a mobile phone and no printer. Of course, the students find it difficult to download the assignments. In addition, the parents often do not have the opportunity to impart school knowledge. This is mainly noticeable in grades four, five and six, when the parents cannot explain the material, but the children cannot yet acquire it themselves.
Homeschooling is therefore very difficult in many families, even if parents try very hard. In the younger generation in particular, a lot has to be printed out - and families are then lacking printers. Some teachers are so nice, print out the documents and throw them in, but of course that doesn't work so well everywhere either. In this respect, homeschooling is not that easy.
I would like to point out that there is an offer from the social department. There is a grant for a laptop for families with students of a certain age. This means that they can buy a laptop and then receive the subsidy under certain conditions.
Since January 1, 2020, children and young people between the ages of 10 and 15 who receive benefits under SGB II from the job center or benefits under the Asylum Seekers Benefits Act from the Office for Housing and Migration have been able to receive the grant. The grant can be applied for at the responsible social citizenship center or at the Office for Housing and Migration at the processing department for voluntary services. You must present a valid ID, a current notification from the job center or the Office for Housing and Migration, as well as proof of purchase for the device. The amount is then paid out in cash at the cash desk. More on this at https://www.muenchen.de/rathaus/Stadtverwaltung/Sozialreferat/Themen/Freiwillige-Leistungen/Zuschuss-zum-Kauf-eines-Laptops--Tablets-oder-PCs.html.
"We couldn't reach everyone"
Marina dos Santos Rodrigues, youth social worker at the Karlsfeld Middle School:
"The current situation is a challenge for all of us; not all are equally willing to be flexible about it. At the Karlsfeld Middle School, we reacted very quickly and switched to homeschooling together. The aim was to take our students with us in the first week we had a digital teachers' conference for this purpose. So far we have succeeded very well. Unfortunately, we could not reach everyone. I can now also be reached digitally around the clock, I have set up a counseling phone for our students and educators. I also try to open to be represented on all platforms in order to make it easier for our students to establish contact with me.Our teachers are very close to our students and provide an additional link between youth social work at school and students.
There are some children who have not even been outside the whole time and others have not obeyed the rules from the start of the crisis. As is so often the case, it depends on the parents. Due to the contact with my students, I unfortunately had to find out that there was a lack of adequate leisure activities and ideas for leisure activities during the Corona crisis. I am a mother too and of course I understand that parents are slowly running out of ideas, besides doing the household chores, helping with homeschooling and working from home, there isn't really much time left. At the moment I'm trying to create some free offers for our students, so now there will be a digital boxing group, where our students can learn not only to box but also how to deal with stress and conflicts differently at home and how to get rid of energy in a meaningful way .
In addition to the topics for everyone, our graduating classes have completely different problems. Not only the degree, but of course also your own future is a big topic more than ever. I am in contact with the career counselors at our school and they try to reach out to and support our students. It is understandable that many families in particular are more than insecure. What parents and students can expect in the coming school year is still in the stars. It is to be hoped that all students will have the same chance to call. There are many questions that I try to answer as well as possible for the students and parents in counseling and to take away fears.
"Fourth graders are back"
Hanna Bogdahn, Head of Primary School on Schwanthalerstraße:
By far the best solution! In the primary school on Schwanthalerstraße, children, parents, teachers and the headmistress are happy: the fourth graders are back! On Monday, the students received their transfer certificate straight away. Gradually a new everyday school life is settling in. Students learn hard and the time is used to prepare for the trial lesson. The children have to observe the regulations, keep their distance, are not allowed to sing, do not do partner work and not play football during the break, but whatever - everything is better than “no school”!
"Hopeful despite all due skepticism"
Dr. Oliver Bloeck, Deputy Chairman of the Parents' Advisory Board, Gymnasium Fürstenried:
From the point of view of the parents' council, I can only confirm the things mentioned in your article "Bumpy restart". A lot is going well because there are many committed teachers and, of course, parents who are really trying to make the best of this situation, which has never happened before. Above all, however, it cannot be acceptable that the Mebis learning platform still does not run smoothly despite the considerable increase in capacity. It is then not surprising that other systems are sometimes used. But that makes the whole thing even more confusing. A remedy urgently needs to be found here, also because the topic of online teaching will occupy us for much longer. It will be exciting when the 5th and 6th grades and from June 15th grades 7 to 10 come back to school in shifts. In theory, that looks easy, but it remains to be seen how it will be possible in practice to comply with the hygiene rules with this number of students. Fortunately, we have an imaginative and committed school management, which gives me hope despite all the necessary skepticism.
"Sometimes really annoying"
Luise, 5th grade, high school:
Corona for me is that I can no longer just go out without having a strange feeling, because everyone always keeps their distance and no one greets them in a friendly way. Homeschooling is sometimes really annoying because you have to motivate yourself. In addition, the tasks sometimes take longer because you don't understand something and you can't just ask the teacher, you have to write down first. You can't work out that well either, because the whole sport doesn't take place.
"I miss my school friends"
Charlotte, 2nd grade, elementary school:
For me, Corona means not being able to go to school and not being able to meet friends. Above all, I miss my teacher and my school friends. In the breaks we can always play and run around so nicely! I would also like to finally go back to school and do sports, such as playing hockey.
"Face-to-face teaching is still the best"
Isabel, 8th grade, and Philipp, 10th grade, high school:
The initial phase was quite unusual and sometimes very confusing because some teachers used the Mebis platform, while others only sent work orders by e-mail or tried to do so via video conferencing. This was mainly due to the fact that the Mebis platform was initially not stable at all. The platform is now more powerful, the work orders can be called up easily and the results can be posted. We were able to adapt to it quite well. Communication with the teachers went well. In fact, we both found that face-to-face teaching is still the best. As much as easy subject matter can be learned independently in this phase, there is no substitute for the teaching of difficult or more complex topics by teachers. A teacher can simply explain the material better and present it in a comprehensible way. That's missing. We look forward to when it really starts again.
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