The 2020-2021 school year just got infinitely better. Seriously, this is a new norm we can get behind.

By Melissa Mills
November 13, 2020
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Every parent knows that your kid could have a million toys, but give them just one empty cardboard box and it's built-in fun for hours. Well, now teachers are taking note of the magic of cardboard boxes to create socially distant class photos during the pandemic and, honestly, they are way better than the old-school versions. Seriously, can we start getting creative with these pictures every year?

Keeping in mind social distancing and sanitization rules that classes meeting in person need to adhere to to help slow the spread of COVID-19, some teachers are having their students pose in—what else—a box individually, then editing the photos to create one giant collage of the class. The result? A 2020-2021 keepsake that's far cuter than the standard ones from past years.

Credit: Courtesy of Powhatan School

"Because of COVID, we couldn’t do a real class picture this year," Kat Marsch, a second-grade teacher from Ruth Hooker School in Selkirk Manitoba, Canada wrote on Facebook. "So best believe I found a large box, sanitized between kids and made our very own socially distanced class photo. Excuse my poor editing skills. I love these kids. Every stressful moment, every gut wrenching thought of the unknown, it’s all worth it for them."

The best part was that each kid could use their own imagination for their shot and have a little fun in an otherwise stress-filled school year. "My students planned out how they would position themselves within the box and everything," Marsch told Today. "It was a really fun collaborative project for them to do, and parents were thrilled with the alternative and that we were able to take a 'safe' class photo."

Credit: Courtesy of Galway Central School District

But Marsch wasn't the only educator to think "inside the box" this year. Teachers in New York and Virginia had the same brilliant idea—and the look of pure joy on the kids' faces makes the extra effort all worth it.

"We had to come up with a fun way to put our little friends together that represents the climate of the times," Tammy Lucas, a kindergarten teacher at Powhatan School in Boyce, Virginia told Today. "This was a perfect way to build our memories, strengthen our kindergarten community, and keep our social distance."

In a year that's brought so much uncertainty for parents and children, these are the kinds of ideas that help to put a little pep back into our step—and remind us that teachers truly are heroes.

But, really, who wants to start a petition to make creative class photos a new yearly thing?

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