Sometimes a piece of paper needs to be cut exactly in half and scissors aren’t readily available. There is another method that can potentially get the job done.
The edges of the page can be carefully matched up, corner to corner, in near perfect alignment.
A beautiful crease can then be made right down the middle. The fold is created exactly in the center, and it’s almost as if the line is evidence of some kind of satisfying achievement. The last step before the main event.
Then, the moment arrives. The goal and intention has always been to divide the original in two, knowing that the method is not ideal.
Carefully, with close attention to detail, the tearing apart begins.
That exact nerve wracking moment when the paper fibers initially begin releasing from each other with the hope of creating two equal shares feels very similar to what some teachers and educational professionals have felt while preparing for pandemic hybrid learning.
The pressure has been intense. The expectations all around us and of ourselves has amplified that pressure. We have made decisions that involve everything in terms of halves; half days, half of classes, two cohorts, two platforms for delivering instruction, dividing supplies in half, and dividing our time and attention in half.
Just like the outcome of a piece of torn paper, it’s going to turn out the way it’s going to turn out, no matter how much thought and planning was put into it. Each separate part is NOT going to turn out exactly the same as the other cleanly and the fear of judgement about the final result is real.
The hope is this: Just as some people who may not feel right about wasting perfectly good pieces of paper that have been torn in some way, or are uneven, we can still find value in it before we think of throwing it all out when it’s over.
Some may want to simply forget when this moment in time of crisis teaching and distance/hybrid learning approaches the end.
This is also the same moment to acknowledge everything that has been done behind the scenes to try to make it work, and that many pieces and parts although very different in many ways, are worth holding on to moving forward.
What is going to hold value for us now as we move forward? What are we going to let go of and what will we hold on to?