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Fall Semester 2021: Teaching During COVID 2.0

Created by Reyna Mondragon (kNOwBOX dance Manager of Community Engagement)

August 10, 2021, Denton, Texas, USA

Photo from 2019, Reyna Mondragon Teaching a Modern class at Texas Woman's University

2021 has been a complete excitement compared to last year. This time last year, I remember preparing for the uncertainty of what the new school year would look like. I remember sketching out a syllabus for a technique class and finding myself scratching what I had written down and rewriting something that, at the time, I was insecure, unhappy, and scared about. I wasn’t sure that what I was writing would work for a class that could either potentially be remote, hybrid, or synchronous. I was also trying to keep up with some research, which meant participating in workshops that were only offered through an online platform for a low price, free, or in-kind donations. Taking those classes was a privilege, but I can’t say it was easy, even with the remote option. I was missing physical touch, witnessing, experiencing in person, and the emotional connection that happens when you are learning, interpreting, and listening. At the same time, it was amazing that I could take a class from local, national and international artists/companies like Jacob Jonas, Jennifer Mabus, DGDG, Kristin Damrow, Sarah Reich, and Yin Yue, among others.

Returning to school?

As we enter the fall of 2021, I am once again finding myself writing a syllabus for a few classes that I hope will happen completely face to face. As I am writing the syllabus, I have an overwhelming feeling of joy and yet also anxiety. I can’t help but think of all of the “what ifs”: What if a student gets sick? What will I do to accommodate? Will they get the same education? What happens if I get sick? What if COVID gets worse? What if (blah blah blah)? These are some of the same questions I w