This was the first academic year I taught completely online via Zoom for Columbia University.
I began with doubts about being able to connect with my students and about my students being able to connect with each other without physically being in the same room together. I began with a commitment to be my most honest self and treat the human beings occupying the little Zoom boxes as videos and voices with dignity and respect. I began with a recognition that I had a full-time job, healthcare, and shelter when millions continued to lose their livelihoods and sense of safety and security, including the human beings and their loved ones in my little Zoom boxes. I began with gratitude for having classroom rituals to return to over and over.
By the end of Spring 2021, as I wrapped up the final classes, I realized how special those names and faces in the Zoom boxes who chose to be my students were to me. I wish only the best for them.
I have so much more to say, but I need much more time to process. For now, here is the playlist the incredibly intelligent, creative, and compassionate human beings in my Zoom boxes came up with this Pandemic Spring 2021.