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Is our teacher missing?

Oct 15, 2020
Courtesy of: Nancy Nickerson Fourth grade teacher Nancy Nickerson models the face mask and shield she wears while teaching at Capt. Albert Stevens School.

Belfast — Editor's note: This is the second in a series of articles by the fourth graders in Nancy Nickerson's class at Capt. Albert Stevens School to inform our readers about what it's like to attend school during the COVID-19 pandemic.

We have had so many people ask us what it is like going to school during the COVID pandemic that we decided to compare it to a book we like, "Miss Nelson Is Missing."

Our teacher, Mrs. Nickerson, is not really missing. However, with the way she looks every day, hiding behind a mask and then a shield, we can't be totally sure it is her teaching us every day.

When we have to remain 3 feet apart as we sit at our desks, how can any teacher come up to the desk and help us with our work when we have questions about something? That’s where the shields come in. When Mrs. Nickerson walks down the rows of desks, she has to wear a shield and a mask. Then she can at least look a little closer at what we are working on.

Sometimes when Mrs. Nickerson is talking with the mask and the shield on, her glasses fog up and she can’t see anything. That makes it pretty funny. Sometimes she gets out of breath when she is talking and has to back up 6 feet and take a mask/breathing break.

When asked about face shields, Mrs. Nickerson said, “It feels like I am in a cage, because I echo, it fogs up my glasses and then the shield fogs up and for some reason it all makes hearing harder, but I would rather be in class with you kids than be home teaching remotely.”

It’s nice when we feel like we need a mask break that we can ask Mrs. Nickerson and she lets us go out in the hall, away from everybody. Then we can take our mask off and take some good, deep breaths. Most everyone has had to do that at least once this year, especially on the hot days at the beginning of the school year.

The other day, when one of our classmates was taking a mask break, we were amazed at what he looked like under his mask. We had never seen his face before, not once this whole year.

Wearing all of this protection is such a great way to stay healthy, but sometimes it can get a little hot under that mask. And, truthfully, because we have never really seen Mrs. Nickerson’s face without a mask, could she be missing?

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