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IICS Spring Hamper
Dear IICS community,
DL 2.0 at IICS Primary - Monika Hoge
Please contact Monika Hoge ( Primary Years Program Coordinator – email@example.com) if you have further questions.
DL 2.0 at IICS Primary
The Coronavirus pandemic has hit educators all over the globe, forcing school closures and shifting learning to online platforms, or blended and hybrid models, in many places. At IICS, we used our experience and reflections from across the community after the Spring of last year, to reinvent and be well prepared for distance learning for the 20-21 academic year. We are so fortunate to have had 3 staff-wide PD days in June, and the summer months to reflect and revise our program based on what we learned. In August we were well prepared to launch DL 2.0 in the Primary School, to ensure continuity of learning for the students. This revised approach builds on the successes of DL1.0, and addresses several key components such as reducing screen time and increasing engagement for students, conceptual learning, and maintaining community connections and partnerships, to name a few.
Keeping screen time down and student engagement up is very challenging in DL. We address this though the most notable adaptation in DL2.0, which is the emphasis on small group instructional “meets,” held online using GoogleMeet. Our research and current experience confirm that student engagement, and opportunity for meaningful teacher observation and feedback, is greatest when small groups of students participate online with their teacher. In a small group all students get to participate, talk and ask questions, rather than simply listening with the mute function engaged. In small groups we can get discussions going and discover our students’ understandings and misconceptions.
As with any new approach there was an adjustment phase for everyone, but with this new format now well underway, it has started to feel more similar to real teaching, where teachers can identify students who are having difficulties with concepts, or those that are ready to move on. In facilitating as many of these small group meets for students as we can, we capitalize on the experience and capacity of our teaching teams and support staff. We are proud to say that now just about every student has 4-5 meets a day, including morning meetings, small groups for literacy and mathematics, as well as single subject lessons. TAs play a critical role in facilitating meets that the teacher has planned and prepared, and students are showing increased levels of responsibility, organization and self-management as they manage their offline independent work time to ensure their various tasks are completed and shared as requested.
This synchronous learning, where learning is happening during the day through small group instructional meets, rather than through a list of assignments for students to complete under parent supervision, has been well received by the community. A grade 1 parent in our recent survey wrote:
“Live Lessons make a huge difference for the kids to stay engaged to see their peers and teachers. This helps to keep the kids engaged since it feels more like a regular school day. This helps parents as well since they don’t have to take over the role of the teacher and become more of a support. Kids can follow the lessons without being supervised by parents during this time.”
In summary, DL2.0 is successful because it is a community-wide effort. Parents have played a key role in supporting their children as they develop independence, time management and task completion skills. While we all yearn to have our students back in the classrooms and to have our classrooms and playgrounds once again filled with energy and excitement for learning, we know that student learning is happening, and our community stays connected and continues to thrive.
Why is Physical Activity SO Important For Your Children During Distance Learning
As much as we know that this is the topic you hear about quite often, we felt the need to write an article about it and make sure that it’s out there for people to think about it one more time.
Physical activity is extremely important for humans of all ages, all the time, but now, considering the recent circumstances, more than ever. Modern way of living has significantly changed our daily routines and the situation is even more serious with all the restrictions we are experiencing at the moment. You know how you feel when you don’t get a chance to move as much, go out and enjoy some of your daily activities. Can you imagine how our children feel?
They didn’t lose just organized sports activities, they lost that walk to the bus, car, store, playground, they lost moving from one class to another, to the cafeteria, running the hallways, recess time, playing tag with friends and running around the school grounds, socializing with their classmates. This has a huge impact on our children’s wellbeing. The only difference is that, as adults, we can recognize that feeling and usually we do something about it. Our children need our help with this and I speak about it as a parent first, since I see it in my house every day.
Online schooling is making sure that our children keep up academically with their course work and schools are doing everything they can to help students move up the scale in their education. Most of the physical and emotional part of the child’s development is on families
now. Our P.E. teachers are doing a great job during their scheduled classes to keep our students actively engaged but that is not enough.
Here are a few things that we can do at home to help our children get through this difficult period:
Most important is to have daily family routines with exercise being part of it,
regardless of the age of the children.
Choose activities that your family is already enjoying. Occasionally try something
new and different.
Make these active times – family times.
Aim for at least 45 – 60 minutes per day.
Try to be outdoors as much as possible.
Some of the activities can be as simple as a walk in the park or neighborhood or taking your pet for a walk, or just playing with pets outside, maybe bike or scooter ride, it could be a jog or kicking the ball, or shooting at the hoop, jumping the rope…anything that you can do within the proximity of your home and at the same time avoiding crowds. Those children with an organized sports activity within the club that is still going on, should continue with it and add these daily routines as much as possible. If being outside is not possible due to the weather or restrictions, there are tons of activities we can do at home. Please see resources for ideas.
We wish you and your family activity and healthy New Year!
Athletics and Activities Department
Making Physical Activity a Part of a Child’s Life
Physical activity for children and youth
Indoor and at-home exercises for kids
Creative MYP Distance Learning Activities
MYP distance learning is…
10th-grade Biology students turning their kitchens into laboratories. Home-based experiments included
making bubbles to simulate cell membranes and dissolving eggshells to investigate osmosis. Home-based
osmosis labs were designed using apples, potatoes and ginger!
8th grade Drama students creating puppet comedy shows and puppet TikTok dances.
10th-grade Humanities students acting as journalists during a simulated press conference with
Reformation instigator Martin Luther & war criminal Herman Goering (Luther; Goering played by Mr.
Spanish Phase 2-3 students creating “At the Restaurant” skits. Each actor playing their part from their