It’s half time. With one month down and one month to go we are in the middle of distance learning for this school year. In sports, half time is used for teams to stop and take time to discuss the events of the first half. For us, this time can be used as a time to refocus and concentrate on making the second half of the game even better.
The following main points often are discussed during half-time and this may be a good time to consider these questions as we do our best to make sure the second half of distance learning ends with a “win”.
- What plays stood out in the first half?
- Are there any players or coaches that deserve special attention in the second half?
- What might the second half have in store?
WHAT PLAYS STOOD OUT IN THE FIRST HALF?
COVID-19 threw us a curve ball and we had to respond with a game plan very quickly. Given the short notice, the entire Kaimuki Middle ohana did an exceptional job in preparing and planning, which has resulted in all students being provided quality distance learning opportunities. With time, we have learned from each other and have made adjustments along the way. Now is the time to reflect on what went well and “stood out” with you and your students. What successes did you experience? Share this with your team and departments, as this will help everyone to be better and we can use these “best plays” to enhance our practices.
ARE THERE ANY PLAYERS OR COACHES THAT DESERVE ATTENTION IN THE SECOND HALF?
Everyone has been challenged by this time. Adjusting to working from home, sheltering in place and distance learning has impacted all of us and of course, our wonderful middle school students. As stressed out as we adults are, imagine what a teenager is experiencing and many of their families. With that said, are there certain students (“players”)who you have noticed has suddenly become less engaged in their learning? We expected the number of engaged students to go down as time passed, but if a certain student’s behavior or lack-of-behavior is unusual for him/her, reach out and be intentional in connecting with them. A phone call or even the old-fashioned “snail mail” could make a huge difference in a student’s life.
The same goes for the “coaches”. Is there any teacher or staff that you’ve noticed a change in? Take the time to reach out and check in with each other. It could even be a short email of appreciation….. remember, it’s often the smallest things that have the biggest impact.
WHAT MIGHT THE SECOND HALF HOLD IN STORE?
It is important that we are all on the same “canoe” and discuss what is expected in the second half and make sure that everyone is focused and prepared. There will be a lot of “plays” in this last month of school and the end of school year procedures have taken a dramatic change. From end of the year celebrations, returning of school supplies and assemblies, a lot had to be changed. More than ever it is important for all of us to work together and effectively communicate with one another.
In addition, there are a lot of unknowns as to what school will look like next school year. But I am sure that we can all agree that school will look very different from now on and distance learning will need to continue in some capacity. With that said, now may be a time to start thinking “out of the box” on how we can ensure a successful start of a new school year for all our students.
Here is a SHOUT OUT to our very own, Kamilla Maii who has been been incorporating SEL into her Webex meetings with her students. Her students never know who will be teaching them. Now how fun is that?
And here is a video that she recently shared with her students at the start of her Webex class. It’s a great way to open up a class, which could lead to a good discussion and could lead to a writing assignment.
You are all amazing in what you’re doing and know that you are making a difference in our students’ lives! Kaimuki Middle School is definitely a place with heart!