Dear Parents, Friends and Families,
Welcome to Week 5 of distant learning.
We hope you are keeping well and are staying indoors and staying safe.
My family and I enjoyed doing a variety of science experiments over the weekend; science always brings a smile to everyone's faces.
We constantly have to remind our children to wash their hands, here is a fantastic experiment (not trick) you can do at home to show the importance of washing your hands - try it with your family and send me the link of what you discovered - hint - don't show your children what will happen, let them discover it for themselves.
I hope you are managing to watch my weekly video on school announcements. I am hoping to give updates via this video link.
This week we will have Virtual Care Calls (VCCs). I can see that many students have signed up for times to meet their teacher already. This is an opportunity for the teacher to gain a better understanding of what your child's learning environment is like at home.
This week we will also see the celebration of Earth Day and on Wednesday 22nd April we will have a digital detox day; no screen time. The aim is to have a day of spending time with family, doing what we love, rejuvenating and taking a break from the screen. As we get hooked on to digital devices, our energy requirements keep increasing. We can help support the protection of our planet by keeping our devices off for a day. Instead we can read books, draw, paint, sing, play games, spend time to admire nature around us, have conversations with our family, cook something, etc. So, this Earth Day, it's time to log off!
Our Tech and Pedagogical Leadership Team have been diligently investigating the use of Google Hangouts and Google Meet with our Grade 4 and 5 students. You may see some changes in how these communications are happening.
We are learning that technology is a new way for most of our learners to learn and we want to keep them safe. Child-safeguarding is a priority for us and it is important that when children are on line they feel safe. For Grades 4 and 5 parents, please check the Essential Agreements that have been shared with you - you should discuss them with your child, make sure they understand the 'why' and then sign them and return them to the teachers. We take these agreements very seriously, so don't just sign, make sure you understand them too.
Please follow the link for stories from the admin team: www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLdLwM_sksrZjsCjWDtNYWhZNPAwfPNobq
Many thanks for your amazing support and feedback, these are testing times, but we will get through them together.
Finally, a note for Grade 4 Parents:
Hope you had a restful weekend. We have made two small changes in our distant learning program.
One is for the platform that we use for making class video calls
We are switching to Google Meet from Google Hangouts for our class video calls from tomorrow, Tuesday, 21st April. The time for the class video calls remain the same- 10 am up to 10:30 am. One needs a code to join a meeting on Google Meet. The code will be generated by the homeroom teacher and will be shared with the students on G Hangouts 10 minutes before the 10 am call. A new code will be generated for every meeting and will be shared with the students to join the meeting.
Parents only need to ensure that the students have Google Meet on their devices.
Students can also type meet.google.com on their browsers and attend the meeting if the app is not installed.
The code for meet is a 9 digit on the invitation link.
Our focus for the first few video calls will be to ensure a smooth transition from Hangouts to Google Meet. We will introduce the tools on Google Meets to the students during that time.
The other change that we are bringing in is in our interactions with our students to answer their queries.
We will be calling these our Check-in sessions. They will be conducted on Google Meet as well.
Check-in sessions begin from today, Monday, 20th April.
As our class video calls are focused on social-emotional development, the purpose of the check-in sessions is for the students to ask their queries, if any, in small groups. The purpose of the session is not to go through the activities for the students. Students are expected to read the activities on Seesaw and make a note of their queries, if any, before the session.
The class will be divided into 4 groups - each group will consist of around 4 students. Each group will get 15 minutes to ask questions and queries, if any, with a grade 4 teacher.
Student group lists with the allotted check-in time will be shared by the respective homeroom teachers today via email.
The check-in sessions will be conducted between 10:30 am and 11:30 am on Mondays and Thursdays.
Students can check- in for their queries at the allotted time only.
*Please note that students only need to join the check-in session if they have questions. It is not an expectation that they are in the call even if they don't have a query.
The check-in session will be a continuation of the Morning Meeting video call, therefore, no new code for the check-in session will be required. After the Morning Meeting, students in the first time-slot of the check-in session will continue being a part of the call, while others will exit the call and rejoin the video call using the same code at their allotted time.
Students are to make a note of their Check-in time slot and be mindful of adhering to the time- slot allocated to them.
** Please note: As we start with our Virtual Care Calls today from 10:40 am to 12:10 pm- Our check-in sessions begin from today, Monday, 20th April, and will be held from 2pm to 3pm for this week only. A new code will be shared with the students on Hangouts 10 minutes before the 2 pm call. The same code will be applicable to the whole class and to be used by students only when entering their allotted check-in time.
Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any queries.
Grade 4 teachers
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