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Hey folks,

Wow. I don’t even know where to begin. There is so much going on since I last wrote. Life is so different and the news is changing to so quickly. But at least our family is developing a new routine as well buckle down for this wild ride. Last week I realized a routine would be critical for our mental health so we had a family meeting to discuss what that routine would be.

It is not necessarily a routine we are excited about but so far it seems to be helpful. We spend most of our day on the first floor, which is one big open room. We have designated it as the Quiet Work Zone from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm. Each of us has set up an area that serves as our personal workspace. Our kids can do their distance classes while my husband and I quietly do our work. When my husband or I have calls or videoconference sessions, we go to the basement so we don’t disturb the kids. We all break for lunch around the same time and try to get some exercise in at some point during the day. Read the full post at

I hope you enjoyed the rest of the post. Stay healthy!

Maratea Cantarella
TECA Executive Director
Our Next Group…
Life with 2e Kids During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Wednesday, April 1 @ 8:00 pm – 9:00 pm Eastern

Our lives have changed dramatically since we last met. Coronavirus has become a pandemic and much of the United States is now practicing social distancing. For many, that means we suddenly find ourselves homeschooling, working from home, and dealing with an incredible amount of stress. In this session, we invite you to share your concerns, fears, and challenges. We will offer strategies and resources to help you and your family adapt to your new reality.


Dr. Ross Greene, originator of the Collaborative Problem Solving approach (now called Collaborative & Proactive Solutions) and author of The Explosive Child, provides guidance to parents on understanding and helping kids with social, emotional, and behavioral challenges. Listen now on BlogTalkRadio.
AP Exams This Year: 45 Minutes, Online, and Focused on Early-Year Content
Students in Advanced Placement classes will be able to take the end-of-course exams, the College Board announced Friday — but the tests will look very different than usual. Find out more from Chalkbeat.

Schools Race To Feed Students Amid Coronavirus Closures

Nearly 30 million children in the U.S. count on schools for free or low-cost breakfast, lunch, snacks and sometimes dinner — but most of those children are now at home. At least 114,000 public and private schools have been closed to slow the spread of the coronavirus, affecting the vast majority of the nation’s K-12 students, according to an ongoing tally by Education Week. Keep reading or listen at NPR.


A Message from Regina Skyer at Skyer Law


Last week, my staff and I worked directly with the private special education schools in the NYC area. We answered questions, made sure that each school’s distance learning plans were well thought out, individually designed, and ready to be implemented. We don’t yet know how the Department of Education will react to these programs, but in my opinion “our schools” are very prepared and have designed outstanding programs that will be viewed as models of what distance learning should look like. Of course, nothing is perfect and there will be hiccups and glitches along the way, but each school is more than ready, willing, and able to assist parents and students through this. Find the message and tips for tracking student progress at home from The Law Offices of Regina Skyer and Associates, LLP.

Skyer Law Provides Key Questions & Answers

Find timely questions and answers on key topics regarding your child’s accommodations, annual reviews and getting in touch with your Committee on Special Education. Take note of these comprehensive responses to FAQ from The Law Offices of Regina Skyer and Associates, LLP.


Teaching Kids at Home During Coronavirus: Pro Tips From Homeschoolers

At Education Week, we write a lot about student well-being. But here we’re going to take a moment to address parent well-being—in particular those parents who now, with little to no warning, find themselves essentially home schooling their children. Learn more from Education Week.


Simple Metacognitive Strategies to Help Anxious Learners Succeed

“I think I can. I think I can. I think I can,” says the Little Blue Engine to herself as she hauls a train full of toys up a mountain. In Watty Piper’s classic children’s book, all it takes is a dose of self-encouragement to give the engine the strength to overcome a seemingly impossible task.  Keep reading at Edutopia.

If We Want Bookworms, We Need to Get Beyond Leveled Reading

Matching kids with “just right” books—texts they can read comfortably—has been the order of business for helping children learn to read for a long time. But some leading literacy and reading experts, writes Wayne D’Orio for School Library Journal, say this popular instructional approach, often called leveled reading, can be too limiting to turn out strong, independent readers who genuinely love reading and enjoy a rich variety of books. Find out more from Edutopia.


School Closures for Coronavirus Could Extend to the End of School Year, Some Say

As national fears swell over the coronavirus outbreak, more than a dozen governors called for school closures on Sunday.Now, more than 30 states, plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, have closed schools for at least two or three weeks. Some officials have predicted even longer shutdowns that could stretch through the end of the school year. Read the entire article from Education Week.

How Will Schools Provide Special Education During the Coronavirus Crisis?

With a pandemic pressing tens of thousands of the nation’s school districts into extended closures, special education administrators across the nation are wrestling with a weighty dilemma: how to provide services to students with disabilities. Learn more from Education Week.


How I Disclose My Disability During a Job Search

When I was searching for a job before graduating law school, one question on every application made me feel especially anxious: “Are you a person with a disability?” Keep reading at Fast Company.


As A Pediatrician, Here Are My Biggest Concerns About COVID-19

This is not a drill. This is the real thing: the global pandemic that doctors hoped would never come. As a pediatrician, I am grateful that kids, by and large, are experiencing mild illness. But as a doctor, I am grieving with physicians all over the world at what is happening in our hospitals. Learn more at Scary Mommy.

Tips for Managing the Stress of Social Distancing as a Family

Any parent balancing work, homeschool and the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic is bound to have their limits tested by sheltering in place with kids who haven’t seen their friends or participated in sports. Lisa Damour, a clinical psychologist and author of Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Girls, knows well about the stress families face in ordinary times. In these extraordinary times, she has the following advice for families to help get through the crisis. Continue reading at MindShift.

Exercise Tips To Help Kids, Teens and Families Stay Balanced at Home

It’s no mystery that exercise boosts mental health and cognitive function in kids. A nine-month study of children aged seven through nine found that kids who were active could think more clearly. A March 2020 report published in Lancet found that 12-, 14- and 16-year-olds who exercised regularly were less likely to develop depression by age 18. Brain scans of 20-year-olds revealed that active young adults have better recall and thinking ability. The relationship between movement and brain health is so clear that the World Health Organization recommends an hour a day of moderate exercise for kids aged 5 through 17. Though most children in the United States get far less than that, regular recess and athletic teams provide at least some built-in movement for many children. Read more from MindShift.


Much of ACT and SAT College Entrance Testing Halted Because of Coronavirus

Two nationwide sessions of college entrance testing in April and May were canceled Monday as fallout from the coronavirus crisis continued to hammer all aspects of the educational system. Keep reading the article from The Washington Post.


What Teachers in China Have Learned in the Past Month

Since February 17, I’ve been teaching 11th-grade humanities writing to students who are self-quarantined in China. Our teachers were in the same position several weeks ago that U.S. teachers are in now—we were expecting to teach in classrooms in Beijing. Now we’re teaching virtual classes remotely from our homes in China and countries around the world. We had about half a week to prepare for online school, including setting up a digital platform that none of us had ever used before. Continue reading at Edutopia.

Teacher, Interrupted: Leaning into Social-Emotional Learning Amid the COVID-19 Crisis

At this very moment, there are so many questions swirling through our own heads and the education ecosystem across the globe. What impact will this have on student learning, on families, on the economy—now and in the long-term? How will we support students who rely on school for meals or the stability that their classroom provides? How will our students without access to computers or technology continue to learn? What will this do to our school and campus communities? How will this impact our school’s funding, our careers? Read the article in its entirety from EdSurge.


My Plans for Social Distancing With ADHD

Like people around the world, I have seen my everyday life change significantly in recent days and weeks – thanks, coronavirus. Most recently, that has included my hometown issuing a shelter-in-place order, making it illegal to leave home except for a few “essential” reasons defined by the city. Keep reading at Psych Central.


How to Ease Anxiety for Kids With and Without Special Needs During Coronavirus Isolation

Life is a little harder for every parent these days, now that schools are closed (everything is closed!) and kids are home. And for parents of kids with special needs, a break in the routine can be even harder to manage, and it can be even harder to continue services and supports at home than it is to continue general education. Plus, it can be harder to know how to comfort your child if he is anxious about the coronavirus. Joshua Rosenthal, Psy.D., clinical psychologist and the President of Manhattan Psychology Group in NYC, offers tips on how parents can ease anxiety in their kids with special needs, create routines at home, and focus on helping themselves so they can best help their children. Experts have also shared their advice on managing anxiety for all kids—and everyone in the family! Read more at NYMetroParents.

Kids want to play. More specifically, kids want you to play with them. That’s a good thing — maybe even the best thing. But what do you want to play? That can be a tough question to answer and a fraught one to pose if you don’t know a lot of games for kids. So, what is the just-add-water solution for keeping kids engaged and happy? We call it InstaFun, a library of games that require almost no set up and work every time. Read more at Fatherly.
How To Cope With Anxiety While Social Distancing

Social distancing is crucial to slow the spread of COVID-19, but can put individuals at risk for mental health problems.

It also has serious implications for those already suffering from psychological distress.

Here, Elissa Kozlov, a licensed clinical psychologist and instructor at Rutgers University’s School of Public Health, discusses strategies for taking care of your mental health while staying at home. Read more at Futurity.

When your kid has earned a well-deserved break or your family is longing for a sporting event, tune in to Jelle’s Marble Runs! This may be kind of silly but we need it right now! I was really rooting hard – for a marble.
Thanks for joining us again this week. We hope you enjoyed this edition of TECA Insights. Please let us know what you think.  If you come across an article or resource that you think our community would benefit from, please share it with us. We look forward to hearing from you!