On Friday March 13, 2020 the teachers at North Shore Christian School sent their students home with textbooks in hand, equipping them with the materials needed to be taught remotely for two weeks. Little did they know that our exodus from our school buildings would last much longer than 2 weeks.
Our desire throughout this prolonged closure is to continue to provide our students with the best form of the distinctive NSCS education that we can. We do this by teaching our students, Preschool to grade 8, in creative and effective ways, using a variety of platforms.
Since Monday, March 16, NSCS teachers have been conducting live meetings with individual students, small groups, entire classes, and combinations of grade levels, primarily using the Zoom platform. Additionally, teachers are providing instruction using platforms such as SeeSaw, FlipGrid, SrWooly, PhET Colorado & Inq-ITS (KnowAtom), Lexia, ReadWorks, Reading A to Z, Sadlier Connect, and much more! There are so many options that have become available to us. Each of our teachers have chosen the platform that is most useful in allowing them to continue engaging with students while completing the NSCS curriculum.
NSCS is continuing to educate the whole child by offering academics as well as the arts and physical education. Our specialist teachers are connecting with students by posting videos and enrichment activities in our weekly newsletter. Individual music lessons and play practice take place over Zoom on a weekly basis. In fact, the theatre group is preparing to perform their show, with actors performing in their own homes, by creating a video performance that can be shared with family and friends.
Our primary teachers are involving our students in extracurriculars as well. They are providing fun activities to keep students connected using social media to host middle school socials, movie nights and game gatherings! We also have an opportunity for all of our families to gather and worship together at our All-Campus Chapel, every Friday, over Zoom. This is a first for us at NSCS, as we have never before been able to gather all of our campuses to worship as one.
Sweetening the pot even more, several teachers from both campuses have visited student homes. Practicing social distancing, teachers have stopped by students’ homes to drop off supplies, deliver Birthday greetings or just to say hello.
In addition to our teachers remaining involved, our Deans on both campuses have been meeting regularly with one another and with their faculty to support, encourage, and lead them through these weeks of At-Home school. Likewise, our Administration has continued to remain connected over phone calls and Zoom meetings, both schoolwide and on our individual campuses. Board members have been known to make an occasional appearance, as well.
While this At-Home schooling experience is difficult on families and schools alike, we are confident that the time and effort NSCS teachers and administration have put into its students during this prolonged closure is making a significant difference in our students’ education.