“I miss going to school and also missing seeing you and all my friends too. I told my mom that if the corona virus is done maybe we can go to the places where we always went. I can’t wait for that to happen, but I understand that for now staying home is the safest thing to do.” (Kendra, Kindergarten student in Ms. Cuthbert’s class).
What a true and profound statement made by one of our youngest students at Berkshire Park, and I am sure she speaks for so many of the other students. School is all about learning through our human connections with each other. And though social distancing is what we have to do for now, I am happy to note that learning is still happening among students from the youngest age group to the oldest. Many of the Kindergarten and grade one students are learning through play in their homes by working on tasks provided by their teachers.
The above photos are some of the students from Ms. Cuthbert’s Kindergarten class. Fahad enjoyed making his rock art and placing it with his action figures. After the children read Mrs. Lintott’s book, “I Went For a Walk in the Woods”, they were asked to gather some natural materials such as sticks, rocks, and pinecones to create a “nature picture.” Deborah came up with a creative stick figure. The children were also given a recipe to make homemade paints and asked to paint a spring tree. We see a Arjun’s sample, which included a red sun. Deborah didn’t have the ingredients for making paint, so she improvised and use the parts of a tree to create her own lovely tree. Kylee especially enjoyed making her homemade playdough. Kendra was proud of her lovely collage: “During a time when the world needed everyone to stay apart…together was our favourite place to be.”
Saint collected 5 rocks and sorted them from smallest to biggest and engaged in math stories with them. For instance, 1 little rock + 4 big rocks = 5 rocks (1+4=5) and 3 round shaped rocks + 2 sharp edged rocks = 5 rocks (3+2=5). He ended the project by painting the rocks he collected and put them outside by his lawn.
By engaging in these simple yet meaningful tasks, the children are learning important skills. One parent thanked the teacher the variety of learning activities because it made her child forget about watching TV and videos!
The Kindergarten students from Ms. Eaket’s class in the photos above enjoyed the same activities as making homemade play dough and paints. Many of them also learned how to make their own lunches after a video demonstration from their teacher. As you can see, many of the children are proud of their accomplishments.
Ms. Eaket’s students enjoyed rock art, creating math pattern with whatever materials they had at home, doing acts of kindness around the house, and using sidewalk chalk to spread messages of joy and happiness in the community.
The Kindergarten and grade 1 students in Ms. Nijar’s and Ms. Rakhra’s class were challenged to create AABB patterns after being provided a sample to learn from. They also created other patterns, important foundation skills for mathematics. While unloading the dishwasher, Aliyah thought of using the items for her patterns assignment.
Aliyah made a lovely picture of the world while Akira worked with her younger sister on a letter scavenger hunt around the house. Jovan not only did the letter scavenger hunt but practiced his printing and spelling of items. Abigail learned how to draw a cat after watching a video with constructive feedback. The class did a mini unit on community, so the children drew pictures and maps of places that are important to us. For Earth Day, they also created some art projects using recyclables.
The grade one students in Ms. Johnson’s class have big smiles on their faces after completing their projects: “Trash to Treasure” and “Family Handprint”. They get the weekly instructions via email and send back photos of their finished products. We are thankful for all of our parents’ support with the learning of their children at home together with the remote guidance of the teachers.