Mount Vernon preschool teacher puts a twist on distance learning

Pre-kindergarten teacher Helen S. Murray is going above and beyond to get pupils away from a computer screen and into a makeshift classroom.

News 12 Staff

May 6, 2020, 6:28 PM

Updated 1,475 days ago

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Prekindergarten teacher Helen S. Murray is going above and beyond to get pupils away from a computer screen and into a makeshift classroom.
The veteran teacher brought her classroom to her students’ front doors in a moment when they are relying on her the most.
Young children may not fully grasp the reason why they are not in school, why they can’t see their friends or why their teachers are now behind a screen.
Murray believes social-emotional learning is the foundation for education, saying in part, “The piece that's missing is the interactive piece…”
Like her students, Murray tells News 12 she finds the change to be challenging. 
To ease the burden, she decided to read books and sing with her students at their homes while practicing social distancing.
"I miss them so much, so being able to come and see them makes me happy, and I get teared up a little bit, too,” says Murray. "It's more than just a job. This is my life, this is my passion."
By doing so, she’s able to continue their social development as well as reintroduce a sense of normalcy into their lives.
According to one parent, John Durousseau, going house-to-house is paying off.
"They miss their teachers very much, so Ms. Murray coming over to see them really lifted her spirits,” he says.
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