Describing what the students are able to do online is difficult, but here is my best shot at it. We have managed to keep or exceed the district pace in ELA and math. This is not insignificant, especially with a lot of the learning being done offline, while I meeting with small groups or conferring. Moreover, during a week that included snow days and delayed starts, many of the students Zoomed for optional learning about Nevada history, state test, and practice for the state test. Impressive!
This week we made JetToys. Using materials supplied by Tesla, students constructed vehicles powered by balloons. Over the next couple of weeks, they will use their vehicles to learn more about force and motion.
One of the most remarkable pieces our distance learning experience, is that we are keeping pace with our brick-and-mortar peers. This has only been possible because of the hard work of the students. Below, examples of what we have been up to.
Although we had to do it from a distance, the students still got to celebrate. Thanks to our parent volunteers and a middle school sibling, we got to complete a scavenger hunt, make a holiday craft, and share gifts via Secret Santa. Thanks to all those involved in making the day feel special.
We certainly found a groove with distance learning, with the images below supplying the evidence. We continue to explore what is possible in this format, and I am so appreciative of the students and families for their willingness to be part of this effort.
Thank you the parents and siblings who helped put together a pretty terrific Distance Learning Halloween experience. The Halloween celebration came at the end of a unit of learning that had some students moving from multi-digit multiplication to multi-digit division and other students learning to multiply fractions. We continued to write multi-paragraph papers and we added Pixton as a tool to plan and enhanced our ability to communicate.
The move to Distance Learning has become more comfortable for the students and we are covering content at a greater pace. We are working with multiplication and division, experimenting with different types of conjunctions and completed our unit on folktales and fairytales. We filmed a video (here) that will be part of Nevada’s Literacy Conference and before starting our fall break, did a directed draw.
A few weeks into the Distance Learning experience and we are definitely getting into the swing of things. In math, we have made it through multi-digit addition and subtraction, worked with rounding, and are now into unit conversions. A few students are working on multi-digit division and finding factors of multi-digit numbers. In science we are studying the function of living things, in social studies we are studying Nevada history and in ELA we are learning about the structure of narratives.
I’ve managed to get the desks six feet apart to get things ready for a socially distanced classroom. Another reminder of how different this school year will be.
It is absolutely amazing what the students accomplished during distance learning and it culminated with a Toastmasters experience Thursday night. During the week the students practiced their speeches but also had time for work on biodiversity and adaptations, a virtual field day, and a baby picture quiz. (Thanks parents for sharing the photos.) The Toastmasters event was especially impressive and through Zoom, over 50 people were able to attend.
Ten weeks of distance learning was challenging but the students were great with it; and I am thankful that I got to experience it with this specific group of children and families.