Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Returning to In-Person Lessons: Part 2

In Part 1 of my returning to in-person teaching posts, I discussed my cleaning protocols for keeping students safe from germs in the studio. This post will discuss policies that I've created for students/families.

First of all, I continue to offer online lessons for anyone who wants them. It's not my preferred way to teach, but I'm happy that I have this as an option to offer. There are tons of articles/blogs available out there on virtual teaching. I'm not a techie expert, and my preference is to keep things simple, so I'm not your best source on that. Google for good ideas!

I feel that my best policy of all is to create trust. I want my families to know that I'm going to do everything in my power to make sure no germs are spread in my studio. So, I've sent them a policy sheet describing exactly what I'm going to do as well as what I'd like them to do. I've also created a handout for students describing our routine in the studio for keeping things sanitary. Our theme for the year is emojis, so I used them liberally on the student page! You're welcome to use these policies of mine as inspiration for creating your own. 

Click here to see my policy sheet regarding Covid.

Click here to see my student handout regarding Covid routines in the lesson.

Some of my colleagues are asking their families to sign a waiver asking them not to sue if a child gets covid. I'm opting not to do this. First, I don't think that these waivers are legally effective. Their purpose seems to me to be more of a deterrent. Second, it would be extremely difficult to assign legal liability unless the victim never left their own house except to go to piano lessons. Third, I think it undermines my best policy - that of creating trust. However, if you'd like to see an example of a waiver, go to the facebook group Piano and Instrumental Teachers With Coronavirus Concerns. If you join the group, within the files, you'll find a waiver that you can use as a resource. 

I am asking students to wear a mask while in the studio. I'm supremely uninterested in the argument about whether a mask is effective. It is incomprehensible to me that adults are actually arguing about whether a fabric barrier slows down the travel of water vapor when we speak, cough, laugh, etc. Because I love my students and their families, I'm more than willing to deal with the inconvenience of wearing a mask if it offers even a small degree of protection, and I don't mind asking that they do the same for me. I'm 55 with no co-morbidities other than severe allergies, but if I get sick, both my husband and my daughter would also have to quarantine, staying home from work and school. It's just the respectful thing to do.

To that end, I am sewing some cute masks for my students out of music fabric! After a bunch of experimentation with different patterns, I found one I liked, but I substituted ties made of t-shirt yarn for the ear loops. I like that ties are totally adjustable for different sized heads and ear-placement and the fact that they can hang around your neck when not on your face. This pattern makes a 3-D mask style, and the pattern includes child and teen sizes. If you decide to use the same template, be aware the edge of the pattern was cut off when I printed it. I had to add a little to the side for the 2 largest patterns. If you need a tutorial on creating T-shirt yarn, this one is good. I will also have a few disposable masks available in the studio in both child and adult sizes in case somebody forgets to bring theirs. I found these at W*lmart and T*rget. I'm starting the mask sewing project today, and I'll share pics later!

1 comment:

Leila Viss said...

These are great, Laura. Thanks for sharing as I'm still working on getting my protocol in place. I appreciate your willingness to tell us what you are doing.
Take care and all the best.