How have we maintained levels of learning during lockdown at The Mary Erskine School?
Our digital learning provision during lockdown replicates the normal timetable pupils would follow if they were in school, as far as it is possible.
All Senior School pupils have live lessons, hosted on MS Teams. These are supplemented by set tasks on Firefly, our virtual learning platform, which cover the entire curriculum and extra-curricular activities from music and dance to debating. Together these digital platforms allow pupils to communicate easily with their teachers and enable teachers to have conversations with a small group of pupils about specific topics.
While online learning can never replace the full rounded educational experience available in school, our teachers have pulled out all the stops, creatively and digitally, to keep the virtual experience as similar as possible.
- Pupils register online at 8.30am each day and lessons follow the normal timetable as far as possible
- Teachers deliver their lessons using a range of EdTech platforms, from OneNote, offering multiple approaches for teaching and feedback, to Breakout Rooms in MS Teams, allowing pupils to collaborate with each other and Whiteboard in Teams. Pupils can come up and write on the whiteboard just as they would in a physical classroom
- We also use Immersive Reader and embed audio and video content into pre-recorded lessons to create more engaging lessons that suit different learning styles and allow pupils to follow along and contribute.
Support for Learning has also continued during lockdown with live lessons on MS Teams.
Pastoral care during lockdown
Pastoral care has remained an important part of school life while the school is distance learning and our guidance teams work closely with their pupils. Our guidance teachers also contact pupils and their families to help us provide additional support where necessary. In addition, the school counsellor continues to meet regularly with pupils on MS Teams or over the phone.
Our video calls have been enormously powerful in supporting wellbeing. Pupils are encouraged to keep their cameras on during live lessons to maintain as normal a classroom atmosphere as possible.
We also have regular school challenges to get our community up and moving.