With schools across the country facing the most challenging teaching circumstances in decades, National Thank a Teacher Day has never been more relevant.
On May 20th, teachers and school staff will be celebrated across the UK not only for the exceptional job they do every day regardless but for the dedication that has seen them go above and beyond their duties as educators in light of the Covid-19 crisis.
We at SCIS would love to show our appreciation for our member school teachers this year by highlighting some of the amazing things they and our schools have been doing to continue to educate pupils, both at home and for the children of keyworkers that remain in school.
St George’s School for Girls
Although their pupils are missing their usual roster of team sports and activities at school, St George’s School for Girls have come up with an innovative way for pupils to still access their PE resources at home.
To help their pupils to stay active while at home, they have been devising sporty challenges for pupils, such as some tricky tennis ball balancing acts and a hockey ‘keepy uppy’ activity that can be done at home. These challenges are all demonstrated through their social media content, with teachers showing how it’s done from their homes or while they are in school teaching the children of keyworkers.
We love their creative ideas that show pupils you can still keep active and have fun at home, all while fostering a sense of community among participating pupils.
The Compass School
Since embracing distance learning, teachers at The Compass School have been working to maintain their connection with pupils and the sense of their school community.
To combat isolation, some of their teachers have come up with a fun way to keep ties with pupils strong – through videos posted to the school’s YouTube channel. As well as a weekly virtual assembly with Headteacher Mark Becher, teachers have also been recording and uploading videos of them reading bedtime stories for younger children – a touching way to keep teachers feeling connected to their pupils.
Robert Gordon’s College
If there’s one thing that can brighten up a dreary day stuck at home, it’s a home-baked sweet treat! Robert Gordon’s College have been encouraging pupils to try their hand at some home-baking while they have this extra time at home.
In a virtual lesson, one set of pupils were treated to a fudge masterclass with teacher Miss Boyne, who said of the experience:
“It was lovely to see some of the S6s trying their hand at baking, we had a great laugh and hopefully they have made some tasty fudge treats to keep the families going.”
To combat the challenge of distance learning, teachers at Gordonstoun have risen to the challenge of creating a virtual teaching experience. Staff have worked hard to maintain the same levels of engagement and teaching online, and one story, in particular, stands out.
The Cotton family, who have two sons at Gordonstoun, were generous enough to take in three extra children over the Easter break who could not return to their families abroad.
Although worried at the prospect of keeping five children educated and entertained, the Cotton family were pleasantly surprised at how the online lessons held the attention of the children. Instead of being set assignments to work through on their own, they are taught live ‘face to face’ through video call.
Hutchesons’ Grammar School
Instead of shying away from exploring the ongoing pandemic, the teachers at Hutchesons’ Grammar School have used it as a unique learning opportunity.
Engaging pupils through Facebook, teachers advised their Economics pupils to take this chance to apply their theory lessons to real-life scenarios – in this case, the impact of the Covid-19 crisis on the economy. In addition, pupils have been encouraged to research the cause and effects of other periods of economic downturn in the UK over the past 100 years.
Clearly, our independent schoolteachers are going above and beyond their duties to ensure that pupils still receive the same high-quality education from home. While these are challenging times for us all, teachers and all school staff should be celebrated this Thank a Teacher Day for their dedication to their roles and vital contribution to society.