Distancing Socially, Connecting Spiritually

So things have changed in the recent past, like almost overnight really. For us in Texas, it started with South by Southwest getting cancelled, then the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. The NCAA and NBA followed suit shortly after, then Hockey and Baseball, Disney and Broadway. All closed for the foreseeable future to help us practice Social Distancing, something we've not really had to do before. 

Schools have closed with no real re-open date, churches will be streaming their services online, and restaurants are serving take-out only, if they're opened and serving at all. Tough times of uncertainty are certainly upon us.

But social distancing can't keep us from connecting spiritually.

In fact, it almost begs us to.

We are wired for connection, built to engage relationally.

That's why I like what that rabbi said, about reaching out
by phone when we can't shake hands. I've been texting, emailing, and calling people all week long. And, while it has been a weird week of disconnection with the outside world, it has been fun to reconnect on walks and talks with my husband and on the computer and phone with my far-away friends.

I hope you're able to follow suit, to stay connected
to what feeds your soul even as we starve for those coveted
hugs, handshakes, and high fives.

Today, a few resources for our new normal.

First, a poolside read-aloud of Mo Willems' picture book,
Becausewith gratitude for his permission to share.

To me, this title perfectly showcases the power that we have
to positively influence and inspire someone else's journey.

Think of it as a p(l)ay it forward.

With that in mind, you might be able to use it to help your learners understand about the power of a practice like social distancing because it only takes one to spread a contagious virus like wildfire.

Second, some decade-old reminders from my mentor, Sally.

Which one do you need to hear today? And tomorrow?
Feel free to use them as mindfulness mantras.
I know that they help me to find calm in my chaos.

Finally, a list of a few fun freebies that have caught my attention
that you might find useful during our homeschooling days ahead.

Ripple Kindness SEL and Mindfulness Resource RoundUp
Mindfulness Class For Kids
Soothing Meditations From Calm 
Zen Zone Meditations
Tinkergarten Outdoor Class & Activities For Kids 
NASA For Students 
PE With Coach Wood 
Writing Spooky With Author Lindsay Currie
Common Sense Resources For Educators 
Convo Cards for Kids from Cara Carroll 
The Principal's List from We Are Teachers 
CharacterStrong Free Resources For Teachers 
PBS Learning For Upper Elementary Students 
Envolve Schools Student Activities 
Nana Puddin' Explains Sheltering In Place 
Lunch Doodles With Mo Willems 
Free Subscriptions Due To School Closings 
Imagination Soup Ultimate Teacher Resources 
61 (and counting) Free Resources For Families 
Joe Beckman's Human Connections Hub for Teachers 
At Home With Emily Arrow 
Daily Read-Alouds With Peter H. Reynolds
10 National Parks To Explore From Your Couch 
Fun Scavenger Hunts For Kids
Awesome Origami Lessons 
Fun At Home Educational Online Activities for All Ages
Mental Health and WellBEing Resources and Help 
Apps For Student with Special Needs 
That Discomfort You're Feeling Is Grief 
Good Grief Resources For Emotional Regulation 
Writing Prompts For Reluctant Writers 
The Best Minute-To-Win-It Games 
At-Home Resources For Kids And Families 
DIY Ways To Meet Sensory Needs 
Explore Live Camera Feeds
Gratitude Activities 

And finally, so many feel-good stories rolling in, like this one 
about the police giving toilet paper instead of tickets.

This one, featuring my friend Junelle Petersen 
connecting with her elderly father through the window.

This virus isn't a hurdle too high for a
devoted daughter and her doting Dad.

Love always finds a way, doesn't it?

A throwback from my days at Bales Intermediate

And this, these choirs singing together apart; 
we can't all talk at the same time, but we can all
sing at the same time. In harmony!

So many blessings hidden in our burden.

Lots of people connecting on Zoom, Skype, 
FaceTime, FlipGrid, and Google Hangouts.
Don't let this opportunity to press pause zoom by 
without grabbing every chance you can to 
stay connected spiritually even as we
keep our distance socially.

Continue to show empathy,
connect with compassion,
spread kindness like crazy,
build hope, 
choose joy,
lavish grace,
and love wholeheartedly.

None of these things will ever be cancelled.

Sending virtual hugs and lots of gratitude,
as always, for connecting with me at the Corner.

Keep the faith; we've got this.



  1. I am loving the way Steve Hartman is connecting with kids during this time! Did you watch today's first episode? https://www.facebook.com/OnTheRoadCBS/

    1. Yes, I loved it! What a great way to use your celebrity, eh?


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