Teachers are determined to keep remote learners connected to the school community.
At Cook elementary, Grade 5 and 6 students learning from home are writing poetry that is displayed inside the school.
“We want to continue to build connections and relationships even with the students that are at home learning, and include their work on our school bulletin boards,” says principal Sarah Loat. “We want to stress the importance of community more than ever during this stressful time.”
She says teachers are trying to offer all students the same learning opportunities, whether they're in the classroom or not.
“Teachers are taking a great deal of time and care to plan and implement creative, meaningful, engaging learning opportunities,” says Loat. “I am very proud of the job the staff are doing to keep students safe, supported and engaged.”
Similarly, at Diefenbaker elementary all students are invited to “Zoomblies”—including those learning from home—to help build and maintain connections. Many classroom teachers have created individual kits of supplies for students, and some have come up with songs for lining up, washing hands, and cleaning up, says principal Huey Wong.
Masks with the school’s logo are available to staff and students, thanks to PAC subsidization for the adult mask cost. And Grade 7 students have been engaged as morning ambassadors, picking up younger students from the drive-thru lane and walking them to their classroom door.
And at Richmond High, students were connected starting early on in the year with a virtual clubs day. International Baccalaureate (IB) students celebrated their accomplishments through a four-day film festival.
“This included digital work, music ensembles, singing, dancing, a chess battle, and an interactive show that had one performer zooming in to improvise music based on audience suggestions,” says principal Anita Kwon.
Hannah Scott, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Richmond Sentinel