Two Wisconsin grade school teachers are keeping their students excited for virtual instruction by dressing up as different characters every morning during the coronavirus pandemic.
- 2April 26, 2020
Kelli Massey, 32, and Matt Fieck, 34, teach fourth grade at Brooklyn Elementary School outside Madison, Wisconsin. They start each school day detailing assignments on a video call with their 90 students, dressing up as Batman, Kermit the Frog and Boris the Viking just to name a few. And the kids are loving it.
“We had one student who said he enjoys waking up in the morning now which melted my heart,” Massey said. “The reaction has been incredibly positive all around.”
“Parents tell us their kids wake up and are so excited to go start their lessons,” Fieck said. “It makes our extra effort worth it.”
The teaching duo has been at it since March 13 when Oregon School District suspended in-person classes until further notice. Costumes range from well-known characters like The Flash and Harry Potter’s Professor Trelawney, to more imaginative depictions Massey and Fieck create on their own. Both stay in character through the entire video call as they detail readings, homework and office hours for students who need extra help.
“We both have a lot of things to dress up in so we’ll look around and see what works and just run with it,” Massey said. “It’s a fun way to make the kids laugh and smile.”
The teachers even came up with a themed week to honor essential workers, dressing up as police officers and doctors out on the front lines.
“My wife is a nurse and I know how grateful everybody is for the hard work medical personnel and emergency responders are putting in,” Fieck said. “It was a way to say thank you to essential workers that the kids could understand.”
Both Fieck and Massey plan to have new costumes every day for the remainder of virtual instruction.