A Surprise, a Meltdown and Russ to the Rescue

March 26, 2020 / Tiffany Godbout, President

March 25, 2020 -

It was 2:47 pm on Monday, March 22 when I got the surprise. My sister in law called in a panic to let me know that the Governor had just announced that school in Virginia would be closed for the remainder of the year! While I had gotten into an ok rhythm homeschooling my 2nd grader, I was not prepared to do this balancing act until June.

It was approximately 2:49 pm when I quit working for the day and started my pity party. How on earth would I manage? I made calls. I cried. I texted friends and fellow moms. I read articles. (This is my favorite so far). I cried a little more. Then on Tuesday morning, I put on my big girl shoes and got busy. I took the morning off to clean out my junk pile coat closet and find all the random educational toys, scraps of materials, long forgotten chapter books and cardboard boxes I had stored in there for a rainy day. I set out to collect everything in one place and to start thinking up some fun, long term projects we could work on. I was so excited. Then overwhelmed. Then I quit working on it and went back to my day job.

Lucky for me Russ Brown, Spark 101’s Content Design Lead, came to the rescue! Russ was a classroom teacher for nearly 20 years before joining Spark 101. So, he knew the challenges we parents would face. As a result, while I was frantically cleaning out my closet, he began researching existing resources and creating new ones that align with Spark 101’s existing videos. By Tuesday evening he had found or created a few new lessons to go with existing videos.  He officially saved me (or at least my sanity) by giving me fun, new ways to use Spark 101 with my own daughter and not having to reinvent the wheel.

The lessons can be used with Elementary through Middle and are easy to follow for new homeschool teachers- or teachers creating lessons for students to do at home. Russ will continue to share his superpowers and will continue to update a few lessons a week with additional resources. Subscribe to our newsletter to get updates on new lessons and blog posts.

Screenshotted below and available at the video link (with user instructions) is one of the materials for home lessons to accompany Bithenergy’s Managing Energy Consumption to Reduce Environmental Impact, which are downloadable. You will need to log in to Spark101.org to access the video, but signing up is easy and completely free. Check out simple step-by-step guide on how to use our free resources!

Energy meter

Also, there are many more videos on Spark 101 and remember, our lessons are just ideas.  We want educators and parents to change and adapt them to meet their needs. 

If you are new to Spark 101 or want to share our resources with people in your network, we also put together a post specifically about how to use Spark 101 as a distance learning resource.

Let us know how you are using Spark 101!  Email us with questions or ideas. Subscribe to the newsletter. Visit us on TwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn. Tell us what ‘Sparks’ you using #Spark101!

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