We survived the first week of remote learning during the pandemic

Amy Cuevas Schroeder
5 min readAug 29, 2020

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The first day of my twins’ kindergarten was kind of a shitshow. This is what remote learning looks like for a special needs child and another in a dual language program.

Not going to sugar-coat it — the first day of my twins’ kindergarten was kind of a shitshow. (BTW, I took the above smiley photo of my husband and our kids an hour before school started.) On Monday, August 24, Zoom conked out just as millions of other kids tried to log on for remote learning during the Coronavirus pandemic.

My daughters’ teachers pivoted to Google Meet — but not everyone got the memo. I watched as my daughter Lydia’s teacher, Mr. Perez, took virtual roll call, his mouth slightly obscured through a shiny plastic shield. Attendance took like 45 minutes, in part because only a few of us figured out how to change our screen names from the generic “User x 834” to our kids’ actual names.

We spent the next hour playing a game of Flashing Faces because no one, including Mr. Perez, seemed to understand that we all need to be muted unless you’re the designated speaker. When Google Meet senses the slightest flicker of sound — a word, a grunt, a sigh — it shows that sound maker’s face. Everyone was making noise — it was a nauseating free-for-all, a visual overload of 20-some kids’ faces in less than 10 seconds…

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Amy Cuevas Schroeder

Founder & CEO of The Midst: The gateway drug to the modern midlife experience. Bylines in Etsy, Minted, Pitchfork. https://the-midst.com/