We would like to say a huge well done to all of our boys for embracing and adapting to full-time remote learning during the last two weeks. We are proud of the resilience and endeavour that they are showing in engaging with their learning. We do know that the more students engage with their teachers online, the easier it is to maintain that all-important personal connection that makes learning more effective. It also paves the way for a smoother return to school when the time comes. We are aware that remote learning has its limitations, but we still feel confident that Microsoft Teams is a safe and effective way to deliver our remote teaching and learning.
During our INSET day on the 4th January, as well as setting up our mass testing programme, which is now fully operational and ready for a full return to school, we took the opportunity to review our remote learning provision here at KNBS. Developments include:
To get the most out of their remote learning, we advise students to follow their timetable, including attending their form periods, and to log on to each lesson wherever they are able to do so.
We know our students are very conscientious and like to complete all of the work set to a high standard. There have been occasions when some boys have been working beyond the hour for a set lesson as they are so keen to get everything done. This can be a bit overwhelming. To add clarity to the amount of work we are expecting to be completed, from next week, lessons will state which are the CORE tasks, (those that should be able to be completed by most students within the allotted hour), and there will be CHALLENGE tasks, for students who complete the CORE and wish to do more. Students should complete the CORE tasks first before moving onto the CHALLENGE tasks, if they have time within their one-hour lesson.
Students like to receive feedback on the work that they have submitted so we will continue to provide this, in line with our school Marking Policy. Feedback may take a variety of forms, as appropriate. This may include discussion on Teams, whole-class feedback or quizzes; for assessment tasks, students will receive detailed feedback in the form of a Strength, Target and Question (STQ).
Below is a link to our latest Remote Learning Support Guide which will help to reinforce what they need to do and how they do this, in addition to answering any general remote learning questions that they may have.
We appreciate that all of the work that your son is doing at home at the moment is ‘homework,’ and we are keen not to make learning a chore or to add to the burden upon parents of ensuring this all gets done – we are eternally grateful for your efforts. We are also mindful of the amount of ‘screen time’ that our students are having and want to keep their health and wellbeing at the forefront of our thinking.
To this end, we will not be setting any separate homework tasks for Key Stage 3 or Key Stage 4.
If your son wants to continue his learning past the school day, he can improve upon the CORE tasks that he has done in lesson time or complete CHALLENGE tasks that he may not have done. To encourage positive mental health and wellbeing, we would recommend undertaking activities away from the computer, such as reading, cooking, gardening or crafts, and to try to ensure that your son spends some time outdoors – safely, of course.
The pandemic and lockdown continue to complicate all of our lives, so we want to simplify things as much as possible at this point. Therefore, we have decided to revert, for the time being, to a more uniform timetable for all year groups, where all lessons start and finish at the same time and are all of equal length. Our usual timetable, with the very necessary staggered breaks and lunchtimes, is not needed without the full cohort of students being in school. The new timings (shown below) start on Monday 18th January. Please prepare your son for this, especially if he is working independently at home. His teachers will be online for their lessons at the following times:
Finally, we know that these are exceptionally difficult circumstances for many families, and we do not underestimate the challenges that some of you are facing. While we at KNBS endeavour to support students’ remote learning and to do our best to provide high-quality learning experiences, we do appreciate that we may not always get things right and, sometimes, technology can let us down. Please do let us know if there are difficulties, issues or things we can help with.
For IT support, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For generally enquiries, contact email@example.com
For our Wellbeing Support and Resources click HERE
Once again, thanks for all your support.
Mr D Clayton
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