Inspiring

Teacher makes headlines for offering ‘quarantine hugs’ to students

May 18th, 2020

If there’s one thing that the pandemic has taught us, it’s that humans crave touch and connection. Unfortunately, all those warm, cuddly hugs that we were used to getting from family and friends have now fallen by the wayside because of COVID cooties.

Cue West View Elementary School teacher Kelsey Pavelka. With the help of her partner, Shelby, this woman has made it possible for people to embrace each other again in a totally unexpected way.

And all it took for her to make it happen was a buttload of plastic wrap!

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Flickr/Eugene Peretz Source: Flickr/Eugene Peretz

We all know that we’re supposed to stay at least six feet away from the nearest human. But all that physical distance can also create an emotional distance, and that tends to make us feel pretty darn lonely!

Thankfully, as a second-grade elementary school teacher, Kelsey is used to thinking on her toes. Since she’s a surrogate parent to dozens of kiddos during the week, she has to do things a little bit differently in the classroom to survive.

But now she’s gone beyond mere survival, and has given the rest of the world hope with her creative problem-solving skills.

And in her world, hugs are still on the menu.

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Facebook/Kelsey Pavelka Source: Facebook/Kelsey Pavelka
With the help of 12 reusable plastic bags and some creativity, Kelsey’s partner Shelby made a barrier across the front door of their home.

If you’ve ever seen SHOWTIME’s hit series Dexter, then sheet plastic like this might look familiar. But instead of being used to cover up a crime, it’s being used to cover her students in hugs!

In an interview with CNN, Kelsey described how her students reacted to her adorable DIY hugging station:
“Most students ran up to my door squealing! Then we hug a bunch of times and talk about all the things we’ve been doing. There’s usually a lot of jokes told and dance moves on display!”
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Facebook/Kelsey Pavelka Source: Facebook/Kelsey Pavelka

The sign near the door reads: Quarantine hugs with Senora Pavelka.

  1. Disinfect all surfaces and let them dry
  2. Arms in the bottom holes and “HUG”
  3. Disinfect all surfaces.

The hugs aren’t just limited to students – adults can get in on the warm and fuzzy bear squeezes too!

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Facebook/Kelsey Pavelka Source: Facebook/Kelsey Pavelka
But, her quarantine setup has a stepping stool for kids to hop onto, and there’s a variety of disinfectants available for them to use.
“Many parents have shared that their student really needed this.”
The language teacher said that real-life connections like this have a profound impact on her students, especially the ones who have been depressed from the lack of physical connection.
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Facebook/Kelsey Pavelka Source: Facebook/Kelsey Pavelka

There was one student in particular that felt tons better after visiting this doorway for cuddles.

“When they got back from my house, he hopped in the kitchen to make himself grilled cheese and he hasn’t wanted to do that in over a week.”
So far, 14 of her students have dropped by for a visit, but there will surely be many more swinging by once they get wind of how popular this trend is.

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

Thank You Kelsey Pavelka for this amazing story. Here is a clip of Robin Meade on her morning show this week.

Posted by LaRell Reynolds on Sunday, May 10, 2020

Source: CNN, Facebook

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