Dear Year 4 Parents,
Thank for you bearing with us and for your support over the last couple of days. We have been astounded by how quickly you and the children have adapted to online learning. The Google Meets have been a delight and have helped us all to stay connected within our communities. The Year 4 teachers have been thinking about online learning for this term and we would like to give you some information which we hope will support you going forward:
Weekly Timetables – We will be creating a weekly timetable so that you are aware in advance of all the lessons and Meets which we have planned. We will post this on a Friday for the following week, so you can digest the information over the weekend. We know that a good routine helps many children, so where possible, sticking to this timetable would be beneficial and would tie in with any live teaching or Meets which we have planned.
Daily Lessons – We will always aim to have the day’s lessons prepared on Google Classroom by the evening before to give parents the opportunity to prepare and print work if necessary. Some lessons will have written instructions, some may be a follow-on from a live teaching input and some lessons may have an accompanying video from the teachers to support them.
Lesson Priorities – We understand that each household is different, and that sometimes there may be barriers to learning. The most important thing is that the children continue to stay in touch and feel connected, so try and join Google Meets where possible. Continuing with English and Maths is a priority and will also support the children academically. We have also provided some Topic lessons for the afternoons to keep learning varied. Each lesson follows on from the one before, so where possible, try to ‘catch up’ with any missed learning. We know these are tough times, so ultimately, do you best with your situation.
Handing in Work – When we create an assignment on Google Classroom, then your child can let us know when it has been completed by ‘Handing in’ work. In order to receive teacher feedback, then you will either need to edit the Google Doc/Slide; attach any digital work; or take a clear photograph of the work and attach this. If parents have the flexibility to support the children in marking and feedback at home, then this would be beneficial.
Notifications – There are a few parents who have let us know that they have missed information or Google Meet times. We are hoping that with the introduction of the timetable, it will help you to know these in advance, but it may also be worth looking at your Google Classroom settings as you may want to adjust these so that you get a notification when something is posted on the stream or classwork.
Google Meets – Going forward, we are going to have two Google Meets a day. We will endeavour to keep these at the same times every day for consistency. Next week, we will be having a Google Meet each day at 9:00am and also at 1:10pm (just after our school lunch). During both these Meets, we will be taking the register as we want to keep a record and ensure that all children are engaging with Google Classrooms. Of course we would love to see the children attend as many as possible, but don’t worry if you miss them occasionally.
Google Meet Links – We will post the link for each Google Meet around the time they are planned for. We cannot post them in advance as the meeting has to be ‘live’ before a link can even be created. We will always try and be punctual with our Meet times, but do have a class in school as well so keep your eyes on the stream and refresh you page every so often.
Google Meets and Online Etiquette – We completely understand that learning from home is very different, but where possible we would like to keep this learning environment professional, especially as there are still children in school. Most children are already showing excellent respect and responsibility, but we have written a few school rules to follow from now on:
- Mute yourself – There can be a lot of background noise in some households so please mute yourself as soon as you enter a Google Meet or have finished talking. It’s really tricky for the teacher to keep an eye on who is making noise when there is a whole class or year group online.
- Chat sensibly – Use the chat features sensibly. During Google Meets and on Google Classroom, make sure that you are commenting appropriately to questions and messages.
- Behave sensibly – When you are on screen, try and behave like you are in a classroom by sitting nicely and not making silly faces at the camera. This will help you and others to focus.
- Show pride – Ideally, when you join a Google Meet, sit somewhere such as at a table so we can see you clearly. We understand that it is tempting to stay in your pyjamas, but be up and dressed and into ‘school mode’. Remember, all the children in school are in their uniforms still. We will be online together for approximately half an hour in the morning and half an hour in the afternoon, so please avoid eating on screen during these times, as it can be distracting for other children.
- Be ready – Next week, some of our Meets will contain more learning based activities. It would be worth bringing a notepad and something to write with to each Google Meet. Sometimes, you might also want to bring some work to share or may want to have the Flashback Maths printed off.
Contact – For parents, please remember that we have a Year 4 email address. This is the best way to contact us and the teachers are checking this multiple times throughout the day. If your child would like to contact us, then they can attach a message to work which they hand in or comment on an assignment or stream post. Of course, we can arrange individual Google Meets with them if you feel that this would be beneficial.
LSA ‘Drop In’ Sessions – We understand that sometimes your child may get stuck on their work so we would like to offer the opportunity for ‘Drop In’ sessions with our Year 4 learning support assistants. Starting from next week, there will be a drop in session from 10:00am – 11:00am and also one in the afternoon from 2:00pm – 3:00pm. A Google Meet link will be open during this time and your child can pop along with any questions or queries which they have. In order for us to support you, please have a go at the work or worksheet first so you can let us know specifically how we can help.
School Packs – We understand that equipment and resources may be limited at home so would like to offer school packs to those who require them and will set a date next week when you can come and pick one up. If you would like a school pack, then please let us know what you would like from the list below so we can organise this over the next couple of days.
- The child’s pencil case which contains a ruler, rubber, sharpener, colouring pencils, a pencil and handwriting pen (please note that this will need to be returned to school post lockdown)
- A lined exercise book
- A squared paper Maths book
Celebration Worship – We know that celebration worship is such a special time for children, so we are going to continue this going forward. When we meet for our Friday morning Google Meet, this will be as a year group and the teachers will continue to award a Star Learner certificate to a child who has stood out that week, either at home or at school.
Thanks once again for your support. We feel that this provision is best for Year 4 at this current moment in time, however the way we teach online may change and adapt as we continue on this journey. Please feel free to email us with any feedback which you think may help us to refine and improve what we are doing.
Miss Goddard, Miss Hardy and Miss Pettitt