GALION — Carlye Bohrmann’s husband is a pilot in the United States Army and has been stationed in Korea for the past year away from his wife and three children.
“Korean law only allows us to be here for 90 days to visit,” Mrs. Bohrmann said. “We chose to come to Korea in October so we could be with daddy for all the holidays!”
Since the move for the Bohrmanns was only temporary, they needed a solution for the three children, Brooklyn (fourth grade) and Colton and Wyatt (second grade), to continue their education. The solution: Galion Online Academy.
“We are so grateful because the teachers have been wonderful working with us, despite the 14-hour time difference,” Carlye said. “The Galion Online Academy has been perfect for the children because we were able to bring school with us.”
Lynne Foust, second-grade Galion Online Academy teacher, and Angie Campbell, the fourth-grade online teacher, have each had to make adjustments in how they work with the Bohrmanns because of the time difference.
“I learned about them going to Korea after I scheduled a weekly recurring zoom meeting for small reading groups,” Foust said. “We made an arrangement to meet with the boys at a time a little more convenient for them other than 11:00pm their time, so I meet with them using Zoom during my early morning (approximately 9:00 p.m. Korea time) and sometimes I meet with them from my home in the evening, so it is their daytime.”
“I record lessons, which are available anytime through Canvas, and provide small group Zoom meetings for Math and English Language Arts (ELA),” Campbell said. “It is difficult for Brooklyn to make the meetings so prerecorded lessons work well for her so that she can watch them at a time that works for her and her family.”
Despite the challenges presented by the time difference, Mrs. Bohrmann has had a great experience with online learning through the Galion City Schools.
“The district has a great set up and we follow along with it wonderfully,” she said. “The teachers are a huge part too, and they work with the kids’ schedules and are always available if we have any issues, questions, or concerns.”
Each time Mrs. Foust meets with Colton and Wyatt, she takes the opportunity to learn about the different experiences the boys are having while in Korea.
“They talked about a street market they visited, and even sent me some videos of the octopi that were for sale there,” she said. “They usually start the Zoom meeting with a new Korean word they teach me each time!”
Brooklyn and her parents contact Ms. Campbell with any questions, and they are able to communicate as easily as if they were right next door.
“Brooklyn is a great student and works very hard to stay on top of her work,” Campbell said. “She has done a great job for being so young and in such a unique learning situation.”
Mrs. Bohrmann and her children have enjoyed the online learning experience with the Galion City Schools because they’ve received a great deal of one-on-one time to help Brooklyn, Colton, and Wyatt get better in areas where they may have once struggled.
“Distance learning is most definitely different for my children since they have always gone to school, but they really enjoy it,” Mrs. Bohrmann said. “They do miss seeing friends in class, but they have absolutely loved being able to do school from home and experience the country of Korea.”