Virtual Museum Tours

While sitting at home and waiting for the virus to pass I thought you might want to look at some Virtual Museum Tours

Museums, historical sites and national parks have stepped up to deliver their signature experiences by offering virtual tours to anyone from the comfort of your home. Here are some of the many places you can go:

The Louvre:

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History:

Yosemite National Park:

Sistine Chapel:

Guggenheim Museum:

Van Gogh Museum:

The Great Wall of China:

Museum of Modern Art:

San Diego Zoo:

The Coronavirus, Children, Parents and Schools



The Coronavirus, Children, Parents and Schools

Franklin P. Schargel

The coronavirus has had a widespread impact on the world. And the situation is fluid – changing by the hour. According to data from Education Week, “46 states have decided to close schools. Combined with district closures in other states, at least 118,000 U.S. public and private schools are closed, are scheduled to close, or were closed and later reopened, affecting at least 53.8 million school students.” It  has a tremendous impact on children, especially the youngest ones. Like many, their entire lives has been disrupted. They are frightened. They are dealing with things they do not understand. And the news and video from television make the situation worse. Parents have a rare opportunity to educate their children while schools remain closed.

Here are a few suggestions.


  1. First, talk to your children. Calm them down. Explain, in age appropriate language, what is happening. Help younger children manage their anxiety around the health crisis. For most of them, this is a traumatic experience and they do not know how to express it. Television is focusing on an increased number of people getting the virus and dying. For children, this may be their first experience of having to deal with death and the fear of dying.
  2. This may be your first opportunity you have had to show your children how to properly wash their hands. Don’t just tell them. Demonstrate how to properly wash their hands. And wash with them a few times so they understand.
  3. Contact your school district and your child’s school and find out if they are supplying lesson plans or have made provision to provide remote or eLearning instruction. Contract your school district office by phone or through the internet.
  4. Children need to be active both physically and mentally. Keep children’s minds active. Play board games and cards with them like Go Fish, Old Maid, Monopoly, Trivial Pursuit, read together, write in journals. Have children read to you. You can use crossword puzzles, Sudoku, jigsaw puzzles, Pictionary, Word Sleuth, Crossword puzzles.
  5. While children cannot be in physical contact with their friends, they can maintain contact via telephone, computers, or tablets.
  6. Use television to aid in instruction. There are a variety of “learning channels” like Public Broadcasting, BBC, The Travel Channel, History Channel, Nature Channel, National Geographic and You Tube.
  7. Have them learn a foreign language using duolingo. (, which is free.
  8. While libraries may be physically closed, they may have on-line services. Call and find out.
  9. Stimulate children’s imagination by encouraging them make up stories and write them down. Tell them a part of a story and have them complete it. Read a story like “The Lady or The Tiger” and have them guess the ending.
  10. Keeping in mind social distancing, but encourage them to play outside.
  11. Do simple physical exercises with them.
  12. Have them draw a self-portrait or a picture of you or draw pictures of dogs, kittens or other animals.
  13. Have them interview their grandparents over the telephone.
  14. Have them write a letter with their non-dominant hand.
  15. There is a video which clearly explains the virus in easy to understand language. It is appropriate for children over the age of 11. A clear and easy to understand explanation even for kids, as to why the response should be so dramatic.




Dr. Steve Sroka’s Message, March 17

I am honored to call Dr. Steve Sroka a friend. He issuing interviewed by NBC in his home town and I will be posting his messages as soon as he posts new ones. His advice is insightful as well as informed.


Morning Friends,
Coronavirus is at a tipping point.
Here is a Message of Hope, not gloom.
With the 3 H’s. Hope. Honesty. Hunker Down.
Coronavirus Update Tuesday, March17, 2020.
Just finished this interview with NBC.
Please feel free to share the link.
Be prepared with facts. Not scared with fears. Stay tuned. Things change fast.
Stay home, stay distanced, stay connected, Steve

Stephen R. Sroka, Ph.D.,
President, Health Education Consultants
Adjunct Assistant Professor, School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University
(216) 554-0798 cell
“You have the Power of One to start a fire. But you need the Power of Many to keep the fire burning.”

Coronavirus, Schools and Students

The governors from five states (Ohio, Maryland, Michigan, Oregon and New Mexico) have already closed all of their schools because of the Coronavirus. State governors, and mayors are moving quickly to address the situation, but the circumstances are  fluid and rapidly changing. The actions being taken will, hopefully, slow the spread of the virus.

What should those schools in states where schools are still open, do? While we do not want to unduly scare the children, we need to give them and their parents the knowledge to deal with the situation. The more we give them knowledge, the less likely rumors will determine their actions. Principals can teach young children how to wash their hands. The Wall Street Journal printed instructions on handwashing (

In science classes, teachers can teach them what a virus is. English and Social Studies teachers can use non-fiction books (Viruses vs. Bacteria: Knowing the Difference, Green Genius Guide: What Are Bacteria, Viruses and Fungus? A Planet of Viruses) and videos about viruses (Contagion, Andromeda Strain).

Schools need to base their decisions on the best medical and scientific information and not the loudest voice. The best source of information is the Centers for Disease Control (



Excerpt from my new book

The excerpt appearing on the Learning Counsel’s Newsletter (  is from my latest book, Who Will Teach the Children? Recruiting, Retaining & Refreshing Highly Effective Educators”

The book is available from Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

The 3 Keys to Globally Competitive Schools Article has been Published

Learning Counsel has just published my latest article ( on the front page of its latest issue.

Educators Rising New Mexico Conference Presentation

I will be delivering a presentation at the Educators Rising New Mexico Conference on March 6th at the Sheraton Uptown Hotel based on my book, “Helping Students Graduate. Tools and Strategies to Raise Graduation Rates and Lower Dropout Rates”.

The Growth of Minorities in the Nation’s Superintendencies

Research indicates that minorities have greater success when they are in schools where there are more adults (educators, principals and other personnel) that look like them.

As a new report from AASA, The School Superintendents Association, suggest the nation’s superintendents are still overwhelmingly white and male despite gradual shifts in demographics. The percentage of female superintendents increased slightly in the past decade, from 24.1% in 2010 to 26.68% in 2020 — more than double the percentage of female superintendents documented in 2000 (13.1%). The number of superintendents of color is increasing much more slowly, with 8.6% of respondents identifying as superintendents of color in 2020, compared to 6% in 2010 and 5% in 2000. Of the relatively small percentage who are African American, Latinx or other minority group, nearly 42% are women. ?

Chris Tienken. the lead investigator of the study  pointed out the position of superintendent is much more diverse than its counterpart in the business world: The percentage of women and leaders of color in the top education leadership position is “well above” the 5.4% of S&P 500 companies led by a woman, the 5% of the Russell 3000 companies that have a woman in the top position, and the only four black CEOs leading Fortune 500 companies in 2019. Principal leadership remains comparatively much more diverse in contrast, with women holding a majority of principal positions during the 2015-16 school year, according to the National Teacher and Principal Survey. The same survey found? 22.2% of public-school principal positions were held by people of color.

In 2017 our nation’s school systems became “minority-Majority” – minority dominated. Both superintendent and principal leadership lags behind the public-school student population, which has become increasingly diverse. While the last decade was expected to bring a substantial turnover of superintendents, with about half of survey respondents saying they planned to leave the profession, more superintendents (nearly 60%) said they plan to stay in the profession.


Most School Shooters Are…

The National Threat Assessment Center, a division of the US Secret Service has issued a followup report to the initial school shootings at Columbine HS. The new report emphasizes the following:

The overwhelming number of  school shooters are “students, former students or students from other schools.” They are not intruders. So we have been preparing for the wrong attackers. The people who commit school violence know the schools. We have created a multi million dollar industry with secure door locks, “bullet-proof” back packs and the rest of the “harding” of schools.

New School Violence Report Issued

The National Threat Assessment Center, a division of the US Secret Service has issued a followup report to the initial school shootings at Columbine HS. The new report emphasizes the following:

“There is no profile of a student attacker. There have been male and female attackers, high-achieving students with good grades as well as poor performers. These acts of violence were committed by students who were loners and socially isolated, and those who were well-liked and popular.”

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