Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Mom Shares Learning Pod Matchmaker Helped Her Navigate School from Home

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- Joining us now is Amanda.

She's a mom who actually formed a pod

with Tia's help.

Amanda, thanks for joining us.

- Hi, thank you for having me.

- So, Amanda, why did you decide

to form a learning pod in your situation?

- So, I started hearing about pods forming,

late in the summer,

and about people hiring teachers.

I went to my neighbors and I said, "You know,

"how are we all gonna do this?"

I have four young kids.

My neighbors are full-time doctors,

and my other neighbors have three school-aged children

all in different schools.

That's about when I came across

Tia's Facebook post about her pods,

and I brought it to my neighbors.

We talked about it more concretely,

and we said, "You know, is this something we should do?"

I said I could host it in my basement

and what hours work, and we kinda came together

as a neighborhood community

to help each other with the pod.

- Are you worried about COVID, though?

- Yes and no.

Everyone's worried about COVID

to a certain extent.

But with that being said, in Connecticut,

our numbers right now are relatively low.

Our public school system is hybrid for now,

with the intent of going back full-time next month,

and I'm personally comfortable with that.

So, as far as having the pod in my basement,

I also feel comfortable with that.

These three families and the kids

have essentially been quarantined

and kind of in a pod together since mid-August.

They all kinda run around and play outside.

As parents, we're fully transparent with each other.

For example, one kid had a fever

at the end of the summer,

and we got an immediate text from their parent,

saying, "This kid has a fever.

"We're taking her to the doctor.

"She's gonna be COVID tested,

"and we'll keep you updated."

Thankfully, she was negative,

but, we let each other know

about sniffles and everything.

- That's great.

And Tia, do you find that

parents are pretty vigilant

about making sure that there's transparency

around COVID-related potential?

- Yes, absolutely.

We do have an app that we use,

so the families are able to communicate together.

At the end of each pod session, we communicate,

and we also communicate prior to the pod

what's going on in each family's home.

- Awesome, and Amanda,

how are your kids doin'?

- They love it.

After the first couple days,

my second grader said, "You know, mom,

"you're great at organizing and decorating,

"but the pod teacher is much better at teaching me."


Well, yeah, I totally agree.

Overall, it's been a really positive experience.

There've been a lot less tears than in the spring,

and everyone just seems a lot happier.

- Well, Tia and Amanda, thanks for joining us today.

Listen, everyone's tryin' to figure this out.

There is no one solution for everyone.

There's no best solution.

It's kind of what works best for you in that environment.

Thank you guys for joining us today.

- Thank you for having me. - Thank you.

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