As the world has changed with the advent of COVID-19, so, too, has education. In the first half of 2020, the Aurora community sheltered in place from March 16 through June 12, the last day of school. Overnight, our teachers adapted our social emotional and academic curriculum—over 30 years in the making—to remote learning platforms. Broadly, after some iteration and taking into account parent feedback; check-ins and academics take place in the morning, with co-curricular activities (music and art, yoga and PE, STEM and Spanish, library and woodshop), in the afternoon.
These uncertain times require not only that we adapt, but also that we build contingencies. For the start of the 2020-21 school year in the fall, we are preparing for three different scenarios: on-campus schooling with new social distancing and safety norms, remote learning, and a hybrid of both. Now more than ever, the small size of our school remains our strength. Likewise, whether in person or online, our tightly knit community remains connected.
We look forward to seeing you.
Head of School
An Important Message from Aurora’s Board Chair, John Brown
From an Aurora Parent Survey:
Would you like your students to receive more or less remote learning, or is it just the right amount?
May 4, 2020
6 Tips for Parents, Students & Teachers: Differentiated Learning & Social Connections while Zooming
- Some people connect better one-on-one than in larger groups. For this reason, teachers are providing one-on-one Zoom meetings with students. Kindergarten and 1st-grade teacher Alexa Eurich notes, “One-on-one meetings with kiddos are keeping our connections strong and saving my soul!”
- To help your child focus on Zoom instruction and foster the connection with their teacher, pin the teacher or switch the view to speaker view.
- Breakout rooms have helped tremendously with remote teaching. As 2nd– and 3rd-grade teacher Regina Sorey notes, “Breakouts allow the students to interact and work with each other, and also enable me to check in with small groups and more easily give support and assess learning. Letting the kids work together is huge, so that they stay connected to one another rather than only listening to me teach during a large Zoom meeting.”
- If your child is feeling shy, switch off their video until they are more comfortable with being seen.
- If your child connects best through touch, allow them to have a stuffed animal or favorite pillow nearby while in a Zoom lesson/meeting to hug and hold onto, if a parent is unable to be nearby.
- To encourage one-to-one connections with peers, let your child have Zoom playdates with one other friend. Rotate these friends throughout the week, so your child is able to remain connected to a number of their peers during this time off-campus.
“We’re incredibly impressed and thankful for our teachers’ ability to stay focused, engaging, and calm; but, most importantly, patient and understanding during remote learning. They’ve shown up and navigated this pandemic with grace and strength. We continue to be so grateful for them and the Aurora community.”