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(Virtual) Learning Together

Chris Pooley
Chris Pooley (16 posts) Head of Primary View Profile

These are very challenging times for everyone, but I feel that the response from our school community has been heart-warming. Throughout my time at NAIS Manila it has always amazed me how our school community has pulled together at a time of crisis.

vse image boy with pencil

Parent and staff - Our Greatest Allies

It has been great seeing recent responses from the parents’ distance learning survey - I'm sure recent events have given you a much greater insight into teaching and learning and I am sure your 'Parent Helper' certificates are well deserved! Until the enforced enhanced community quarantine notice, teachers had been in school daily and I would like to thank them for their resilience, professionalism and positive attitude. It is clear that we have a team that genuinely care about the children they teach. As a school we are currently having to be a little more creative in the way we promote wellbeing amongst our teachers, many of whom are far away from home and their families. Staff video challenges, pizza delivery, 30-day fitness challenges and Come Dine With Me may well be thinking outside the box, but it certainly helps to keep staff morale high.

Virtual Schooling - Our Journey

With many NAE schools now running with virtual schooling, we have a great deal of expertise within our group - collaboration is indeed stronger now than ever before. Initially, we were informed (and we hoped) school closure would only be for a short period of time. A school without children was a very strange place!

During the first few days we didn't want to introduce anything new, that the children (or parents for that matter) would not be used too. We took the decision to keep it simple and focus on tasks that supported the children's learning in school. Rather than bombard parents and the children with tonnes of worksheets we wanted the work to have a practical element. We are also aware that in our schools in China, Hong Kong and Vietnam, for example, there had been struggles with the amount of screen time children have had, with teachers trying to do everything through websites or apps. Again, another example of the willingness of NAE Schools to collaborate and help others.

We are still in the infancy of our virtual schooling schedule, however the feedback so far has been excellent

I have so much more respect for educators and teachers, the passion and the work you do for our children and with our children is priceless.
I appreciate your teacher's dedication, guidance and constant feedback with virtual schooling materials. It has encouraged my child to be more independent.
I now appreciate what an art teaching is. I have had to step out of my comfort zone as a parent, but feel I am learning as much as my children.

Key Stage Coordinators have collaborated with staff and are looking at using video clips (that pose less of a safeguarding risk to both staff and younger students than apps like Skype or Zoom) to engage their students further in their learning, as we continue to look at ways to evolve. Virtual schooling is certainly not something the teachers signed up for, but they have upskilled quickly and are always searching for creative ways to 'hook' their students.

Primary teachers continue to send out daily virtual schooling emails before 0745 (technology depending) and are online from 0930-1000, 1130-1200 and 1330-1400 to feedback on learning, mark work and encourage engagement. They remain the main point of contact for parents and children as we look to engage them in hands-on, challenging tasks that follow our broad and balanced curriculum. Our holistic education is right at the heart of our virtual school. We are ensuring that our students remain looked after academically, emotionally, physically, creatively, and socially. 

Last week you will have noticed that we have adapted and launched challenges through our virtual schooling platform, that will also run over the Easter holidays. Our collaboration partners, Juilliard and MIT, have already developed, and continue to develop materials for our NAIS Manila students to use. Through our global family of schools and world-class collaborations, these challenges are only open to NAE students.

1. Within our PE curriculum, our children have been active and using lessons from Juilliard.

2. Mr. Denham has launched a made a creative video to launch the Global Campus competition which will run across all 66 schools.

3. Through our collaboration with MIT, we are running 'A Different Lens' which is something the whole family can get involved in.

a diff lens primary entries

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your support with virtual schooling. This is certainly a period of time that will test our resilience but I believe that this is one of the most important 'soft skills' and something that is very hard to teach in the classroom.

- Chris


 

If you want to know more about our school but unable to visit due to current travel restrictions, you can book one of our Virtual Discovery Meetings by clicking the link below.

NAIS Manila Virtual Discovery Meeting

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