Tuesday, April 6, 2021

A classroom is just the room you're learning in

Alternative learning sites for New York City school children while the schools are closed  

A year into teaching my kids, I realize they may be better off just joining the work force. They will learn on the job... literally. 

After a week of them having no school at all, it's good to keep in mind some alternative learning spots for school breaks or when the schools close randomly due to rising infection rates. 


Bowling Alley staff 

If the elementary school kids can’t lift the heavier balls, they can still shine and buff them and roll them over to a middle schooler to lift onto the rack. Keeping score in bowling is its own class of higher mathematics. And measuring feet for the shoe rental helps develop size and spacial relations skills. NASA here they come!


Bar back 

As most of the children are technically not of legal drinking age, they can study the craft, rather than pouring the actual alcohol. Mixology - ology, that’s a science! The school experience this year has prepared them well. The “blended” model of school has them ready to whip up daiquiris and pina coladas. As it is important to encourage their creativity, coming up with a good garnish is the new art class.


Hair stylist

Where better for kindergarteners to go to develop their scissor skills than one of the many hair salons that are open for business? Measurement and length are taught, pre-cut, as well as simple subtraction, post-cut.


Bouncer 

With the bars open, someone needs to handle the influx of parents swinging by for some day drinks. The school closure has some parents relying a bit too heavily on the alcohol to get us through the day. How will the children know when the parents have had enough? Blood alcohol content is a percentage… that’s a masterclass in fourth grade math.


Waiter 

Most parents have trained their children to bring them drinks at home (if they are good parents). Those skills will transfer seamlessly to bringing strangers drinks and snacks at the restaurants that are still operational. The brunch crowd will teach them introductory Spanish: Mimosas, and shop class: Screwdrivers.


Gym attendant 

Towel folding and rolling is the associate’s degree of the future. Give them skills they will use in their home life as well. Learning weights is part of the regular curriculum. Plus those tiny fingers are perfect for cleaning in the tiniest spaces of the machinery. NOTE: Spotters must be 5th grade or older.


Barista

In addition to the art of coffee making, the baristas will also be able to work on their penmanship, writing the names on the cups. This class will earn double credits, as most names on coffee cups also qualify as creative fiction writing.



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