PAULDING COUNTY, Ga. - With the country's COVID-19 peak still ahead, Georgia families are grappling with the new responsibility of monitoring their kids' online learning around the clock.
In an attempt to ease that burden, employees at the Paulding County Sheriff's Office are scrounging up childhood favorites and posting videos to Facebook of deputies reading children's books.
Sgt. Ashely Henson, who started the daily effort, said it's bringing back a favorite pastime of his. "I remember reading books like that to my boys, so when I read them, it's kind of like going back in time for me," Henson said. "To make all the sounds like the animals, to read it the way you would like it's your own children -- I think that's what is important."
The effort has been well received on Facebook, attracting tens of thousands of views.
A teacher commented on one of the social media posts, saying she incorporated the daily reads into her lesson plan. Another resident thanked the deputies for their continued service.
"We've got to do things differently, we've got to work with the times," said Henson, emphasizing the importance of engaging all residents -- not just the ones committing crimes.
From K-9 handlers to school resource officers, the social media posts familiarize kids with different roles in the department.
"I think it's neat to highlight these different positions within the sheriff's office that way they can see a different face and learn a little differently," Henson added.
Sgt. Henson hopes the reading effort will inspire people to brainstorm clever ways to help others during these chaotic times.
The brains behind the book selection is Sgt. Henson's wife, who is an elementary school administrator.
The couple is encouraging residents to make story suggestions on social media as the "daily read" continues.