The Virtual Learning Launch last week was quite successful as measured by the number of connections we had with students and families. This week our focus is on time and resources, so we are evaluating how much time is devoted to academic lessons and managing family expectations.   I sent a survey to teachers earlier this week requesting their feedback on the implementation of the Virtual Learning Model, and I will report on that later this week.

I hear how families are doing indirectly from teacher and administrator comments, but rarely do I get to hear directly how students and families are feeling.  Please share your thoughts by clicking here and let us know how we can help you during this time.

The Four R’s

I offer a few comments for parents as they continue to engage in this unusual world of their children learning at home.  I share these as “Four R’s” to help organize a few thoughts.

First is focus on the relationship with your child’s teacher and the school.  We have been purposeful about connecting with students and families, but please reach out and ask for assistance and clarification when needed.  Teachers have posted office hours on the school’s websites, so they make it convenient for students or parents to email and get a response.  Many teachers are setting up Zoom Video Conferencing sessions, so students can virtually connect with their teachers for assistance with an assignment or lesson.

The second is establishing a routine to help manage your household.  Children require structure and stability, and the ACSD#1 virtual learning model is delivered asynchronously (at a time you choose—not at a scheduled time that the school chooses).  You should be able to set your families’ schedule, because we recognize that not everyone can attend class at the same time. Please let us know if we are creating too many expectations or time demands, so we can adjust lessons or office hours to meet students’ needs.

The third is reflection.  Learning is about thinking about what you are doing, not just doing.  The frequent question, “what did you learn in school today?” is a valuable question during a child’s time of learning at home.  Ask your children what was amazing, fascinating, or something they had not considered before.  The virtual learning environment provides a wealth of opportunity for discovery.

Finally, the fourth “R” is relax.   This is not simply “kicking back.” Relaxing in this sense is about taking the time to pause and breathe.  Please have patience with yourself during this crazy time and have your child take a break from learning by doing activities that do not involve the computer or a screen.  If your child is struggling with a concept, ask your child’s teacher for assistance and consider breaking the assignment into smaller parts.

We posted enrichment activity resources on our website for parents to provide other opportunities to engage your children, and we will continue to provide resources to support learning from home.  Please share a comment or suggestion that may be helpful for others or allows us to improve the virtual learning experience for your child.