Good Morning Sherwood Students and Families,
I hope you are well and this past week has gone well for you and your family. I hope that you have all been keeping safe and healthy. On behalf of our entire staff, we would like to thank you for your patience as the province works through the current reality. We recognize that this has created a great deal of uncertainty and we would like to reassure you that we remain focused on ensuring that learning continues. We are indeed living in unprecedented times, and filled with wonder in terms of what the future will bring us with ongoing learning. For the foreseeable future, together we will delve into the world of online learning. Things will definitely look different than they did before classes were cancelled but this is an excellent opportunity for us to try do things differently.
As you read the rest of this message, please know that we understand that all families are in different circumstances right now. We hope that you are all in a position to support ongoing learning, but we recognize that you may not be. Regardless of your family circumstance, we respect your position and are ready to assist you in whatever ways we can. I want you to know that we are here for you to help connect you to learning in the ways that will work best for your family. If you are in need of help, please reach out.
The CBE has spent the past two weeks creating programming opportunities that will be distributed online for our students. Our teachers have been working very hard and are taking up this work on a very steep learning curve to provide learning opportunities & activities that will begin in the next couple of days.
While most learning will occur online, we know that some families may have unique needs, teachers will be connecting with you about your specific situation to find the best way to support. Teachers will use a variety of platforms, likely centering around Google Tools and Brightspace by D2L. While platforms and tools may look different grade-to-grade, information should be consistent within each grade team.
The following tentative timeline will assist families in your planning to take up this work at home:
Monday, March 30: For most of the day, teachers will be involved in virtual meetings, planning together in grade and subject teams, and personalizing the first few days of lessons and assignments which will be rolled out to our students shortly. Please expect an email from your child’s teacher beginning today.
Tuesday, March 31: Your child’s homeroom teacher will have connected with you. Your teacher’s email will include several important questions to help us plan for your child’s learning including your child’s access to technology at home, and access to a computer and the internet. Teachers will email students/parents and follow up with those who do not respond with a phone call. As Teachers may be working from home, they may be using their personal devices, therefore, the number may come up as “unknown” or “ID blocked”. We are also making a plan to address the needs of students without internet/technology resources and to determine how to best support students with print materials. Teachers will also ask you how you and your family are doing and encourage you to connect with wellness supports and resources available within and beyond the CBE. Please take time to respond to this important email from your child’s teacher.
Wednesday, April 1: Grade 4-9, your child’s teachers will let you know how they will provide course materials and the best way to reach them if you or your child has questions. Students in Grade 5 through Grade 9 will access learning through a variety of platforms, likely using Google tools, and possibly through Brightspace by D2L. Your child’s teachers will confirm the platform that they will be using on Wednesday. Consistency in platform choice by all of your child’s teachers is something we are striving for. Your child’s teachers will also provide you with more information about what you can expect from them in terms of assignments, how to submit any work, and resources and supports you and your child can use to support their learning at home. Teachers will also provide a schedule that families should follow so that there aren't any overlaps in expectations for work completion. I would also strongly recommend that parents schedule at least 20-30 minutes of reading per day beyond this schedule.
Monday, April 6: you will receive weekly learning plans from teachers. Each Week’s plan will highlight what we are working on, including various resources and will explain the activities or tasks you child will have to work on.
As a system, we are expected to align with the guidelines shared by Alberta Education for continuity of learning and content delivery by division. Specifically, that content delivery for each grade is broken down as follows
· Education content will continue to focus on language/literacy and mathematics/numeracy outcomes, and there will be opportunity to incorporate science and social studies outcomes through cross-curricular learning
· Included in this online work, your child should continue to incorporate 20 minutes of independent reading into their day.
· Teachers will assign an average of five (5) hours of work per student per week.
· Education content will focus on core mathematics, language/literacy, science and social studies curriculum outcomes
· Teachers will assign an average of ten (10) hours of work per student per week.
Parents may want to supplement student learning by providing their children with additional resources. The following provincial resources are available to parents:
We are excited with the prospect of providing these new ways of working together and ongoing learning opportunities for our students. We have been missing our students terribly and not being with them has been very difficult, we look forward to reconnecting with each student. We hope you look forward to re-connecting and receiving ongoing messages from teachers and administration in the days to come. Stay safe, stay well and stay active.
Stay strong Sherwood and please continue to take care of each other,
Tracy, Colleen and the Sherwood Team