On our midday walk yesterday Kish and I passed this display on one of the German Village byways. I could be wrong, but I’m guessing it might have been part of a science project for some youngster who has been home schooled for the past six weeks after the shutdown of Ohio schools. It reminded me, at least, of science fair displays in the gymnasium when I was a kid.
The coronavirus shutdowns have put pressure on everyone in many different ways. Some people have been furloughed or lost their jobs altogether. Some have had to continue working at their public-facing jobs under the threat of infection. Some have had to learn new technology to do their jobs remotely. And all of us have had to adjust to staying inside and not doing the things that we used to take for granted, like going to a restaurant for a lunch that you didn’t cook yourself or stopping off at a bar with friends to watch a ball game while drinking a cold beer.
But the challenges for those parents who have had to combine the adjustments that all of us are facing with trying to entertain, and educate, young kids at home is more difficult by several orders of magnitude. In fact, it’s mind-boggling, and it takes the concept of the SuperMom and SuperDad to an entirely new level. So if what we saw on our walk yesterday was in fact a kid’s science project, I tip my cap to the Mom or Dad who came up with the idea of their own little at-home science fair. And who knows? That little science project might spur a lifelong love of gardening for the student.
Many of us have talked about recognizing, thanking, and rewarding the health care professionals, the truckers, the people working in the grocery stores, the delivery truck operators, and the others who have played such an essential role during the shutdown. Let’s not forget the parents of young children in that richly deserved chorus of praise and gratitude. They are doing something that most of us would never even think of trying. And, long term, what is more important that taking care of kids, and keeping them healthy, and safe, and heading in the right direction during a global pandemic?