What does a city look like during the corona outbreak? Photographer Annelien Nijland is documenting the daily reality of one-and-a-half metre life. Part 2: Deserted classrooms.

Photo by Annelien Nijland

As in so many other schools at the moment, a strange tranquillity has descended upon Kindercampus Molenpark. The buzz of children playing and learning has made way for silence and echo. Every now and then, a teacher comes in to arrange something for the home teaching that children are now undergoing. Or to give live instruction to small groups of children who need extra help and supervision. They’re allowed into the classroom in twos, sitting far apart so that the teacher can give instructions from a safe distance. Afterwards, the chairs and desks are cleaned with the disinfectant now available in every classroom. Posters hang throughout the building, telling people to wash their hands thoroughly.

Photo by Annelien Nijland

Deputy-head Isis van Nunen is at school too; digital teaching takes a lot of organising. It was a challenge to get all the pupils onboard, because although the school was already using iPads, not all of the parents had the digital or language skills needed to help the children with their lessons.

Photo by Annelien Nijland

Two weeks later, everyone was up-and-running and working diligently, says the deputy-head. She has also noticed that this unique situation has generated renewed creativity among her team. The teachers are constantly looking for ways of improving home teaching, suggesting ideas such as online lessons in programming. Isis and her colleagues are sensing the urgency of their profession more strongly than ever.