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Glitch making e-learning a challenge

October 9, 2020

Greetings, friends and neighbors! I’ve talked with so many of you this past week. On the minds of so many

parents and grandparents are the continuing challenges of Chicago Public School online learning.

One of the biggest problems is the use of the laptop computers powered by Google Chrome Operating System. All CPS students in West Lawn received free laptops from their local school. Many parents and teachers have reported having problems. As a result, students miss lessons and then must make up the work and turn in their homework late.

Here are some suggestions from parents in West Lawn: 1) try updating the Chrome app, 2) purchase an Ethernet cable and connect it to Chromebook using your router, and 3) clean the “cookies” in your laptop.

One parent said that if these ideas don’t work, get in touch with your teacher and the school will swap out your problem laptop for a new one.

I asked my 7-year-old grandson, Roman, about his experience with learning at home. He is the fourth Roman in my family after my father in law, my husband and my oldest son. There are a lot of Romans roamin’ around!

Young Roman said that he likes learning at home very much. He likes it better than classroom learning. I think the fact that his mom is a former high school teacher and his dad earned a degree in computer science helps tremendously.

Best of luck to all our students and their parents as all the glitches are worked out.

In the meantime, parents are concerned about the novel coronavirus and how it will affect Halloween. Mayor Lightfoot has issued some guidelines. If you choose to participate in Halloween, parents and their kids are to trick or treat in groups of six or less. People who are giving out candy are asked to leave a porch light on and put a sign out stating that they are participating in Halloween. Kids should not reach into a bowl of candy. The person giving out candy should wear a mask and gloves and put candy in the trick or treater’s bag.

I am going to buy lots of candy. This will be good for the economy. I will give candy to all children who come to my door. Last year we had around 70 trick-or-treaters. I don’t anticipate having that many this year. I may end up with lots of candy. This is not going to be a problem in my house.

Speaking of pandemic, did you know there is an at-home COVID-19 test being developed? It is called the Binax Now test. It has been approved by the FDA for use in doctors’ offices.

It is much like other medical at home tests with rapid results like at home pregnancy tests, blood sugar tests, blood pressure kits, etc. If these at-home tests are low cost, people would be likely to test often and then take immediate action like self quarantine.

According to economist John Cochrane, “Home testing could stop outbreaks across the country, but the FDA has not approved the tests for home use.”

Cochrane also said, “These tests done in a doctor’s office are too cumbersome to use on a scale needed to reopen the economy.” If this is something you are interested in, call your congressman, Dan Lipinski, at (773) 948-6223 and ask what he and other congresspersons are doing to encourage the FDA to approve the Binax Now test for at-home use.

Reopening the economy is the focus of many congresspersons. On National Manufacturing Day (Oct. 1), Congressman Lipinski said, “We recognize the industry’s part in the growth and prosperity of our economy and raise awareness of important investment and career opportunities in manufacturing.” He also said that manufacturing employs 12.8 million Americans, with millions more employed in related jobs.

On a lighter note, my neighbor, Joyce, who has lived in West Lawn since 1957, commented on La Michoacana ice cream parlor, 6610 S. Pulaski, which I mentioned in my column a couple of weeks ago. Joyce told me there is another La Michoacana ice cream parlor. This one is located at 5958 S. Pulaski. They are open from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. everyday and have lots of ice cream treats. Joyce recommends their Creamsicles.

If you choose not to participate in Halloween trick or treating with your kids or grandkids, perhaps a visit to either La Michoacana would be a sweet alternative.

All the members of Calvary Lutheran Church Seniors Club, located at 6149 S. Kenneth would like to wish a very happy birthday to Ruth Wagner (Oct. 12), Loretta Willholt (Oct. 12) and JoAlice Revas (Oct. 13). May Ruth, Loretta and JoAlice be blessed with a wonderful birthday and a year filled with good health and happiness.

Congratulations to Deacon Sergio Robles of St. Nicholas of Tolentine Parish on his ordination on Sept. 26 and his first Mass on Sept 27. May our Lord bless you and guide you in your new responsibilities in leadership and service.

I’m glad to report that my good friend and neighbor has received some help with a large, un-reyclable plastic item that was dumped in her blue recycle bin. She made some calls and was looking forward to the day she could once again use her blue bin.

After I mentioned it in a recent column, 23rd Ward Ald. Silvana Tabares arrived at my friend’s house with two trucks, a car and three men. The alderman and her helpers and my neighbor had a nice chat while the item was removed from her recycle bin and put in her regular garbage bin. Thanks to all for helping my neighbor.

I’m so grateful for all my neighbors. I appreciate all the calls and texts. Let me know about any problems and concerns and birthdays and anniversaries. I love hearing from you.

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