We are getting ready for some big changes this week, as St. Michael’s works to transition to interim online instruction. I’ll be working this week to determine the methods that we can best support our students in maintaining a consistent and rigorous level of instruction. Stay tuned for more information (and know that we are likely to make adjustments as we go – this is new territory for us all!).
While students are here Monday through Wednesday, we will work to maintain a sense of consistency and regularity about our days. We will work on reading, writing, math, and social studies as usual. Plenty of time will be spent learning how to use the iPads to access the digital components of our language arts and math programs, as well as reviewing how to upload work through Google Drive and Seesaw.
While many details are still to be determined, here are my hopes and goals as we move forward:
- I’ll be using this blog as the primary mode of communicating assignments. If there are additional people (grandparents, tutors, etc.) who might be helping support your child in this period, please have them sign up to receive email notifications.
- Students should expect daily work and specific time should be set aside to complete schoolwork. The expectations put forward by the administration is that students should have three to four hours of work a day. Knowing that home schedules will be complicated, this work can be done at the time that’s best for you.
- I’ll aim to impress on students that message that while were are not AT school, we still will HAVE school. Please help remind them that this is not an extended vacation.
- I intend to be available to answer questions, chat with students, review work, etc. through a variety of resources: skype, phone call, video chats, zoom, and more are all possibilities. Once we know more information, I’ll let you now the best ways we can communicate.
- I hope to continue the sense of community and togetherness that we have worked to develop this year. I’ll be looking carefully for ways that students can collaborate online and share their thinking remotely. Also, I’ll be on the lookout for ways that we can incorporate creativity, humor, and fun into this type of work.
I believe that learning is a social and interactive process, not simply a taking-in of facts. It will be a challenge to maintain that element of learning through remote instruction. This is certainly a less than ideal situation, but I know that we can make the most out of it. In fact, I’m hopeful that this type of disruption might result in bursts of creativity all through our society (boredom and restlessness can be great creativity boosters!). When the dust settles and we resume some normalcy, perhaps we’ll have discovered new ways to work and learn together.
I’ll end this week’s post with the class mission statement that the kids created to begin the school year. Whether we’re physically in the same space or not, it still applies:
“Room 3B is a community of learners. We are kind, considerate, respectful, and trustworthy. We use our different skills to work together and help each person succeed. We learn by trying things out, making mistakes, supporting each other, cooperating, and sharing our ideas in a safe space.”