2 quick tips to help self-isolating students catch up

Exams are going ahead- so how do you ensure that students who have been self-isolating can catch up in time?
15th October 2020, 3:00pm
Jay Sturman

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2 quick tips to help self-isolating students catch up

https://www.tes.com/magazine/archive/2-quick-tips-help-self-isolating-students-catch
Coronavirus: How To Help Gcse Or A-level School Students Catch Up On Lost Learning

Exams look likely to be going ahead in 2021, and exam content is not going to change.

With this in mind, school leaders need to ensure that those students who have been absent due to Covid-19 self-isolation are able to catch up with classmates in time for the exams.

Over the past three weeks, like most schools, we have been scratching our heads about how to get blended learning right. 

We are taking a simple approach that makes the most of what is already out there amongst our teams and across our trust network. We want it to be easy for parents to see where students are up to, easy for students to access learning and easy for teachers to provide appropriate materials.

Coronavirus: How to help students catch up on learning

We have found that two simple tricks have really helped here.

1. Map it all out

Like most schools, we created a curriculum map across all year groups and all subjects as a response to the new Ofsted framework.

We have now loaded this on to a simple Excel spreadsheet, which can be shared with parents/carers and students. It's a really quick and effective way for them to see where students are in their curriculum and it provides a single access point for content.  

2. Resources just a click away

Our shared resources are already stored in Google Drive. We have now hyperlinked to them from each learning activity or episode on the curriculum sheet.

This means that with just one click students (and parents/carers) can jump into, for example, Year 7 English for Term 2 and access three sub-folders: "Knowledge organiser"; "SGS resources" and Oak National". 

Because we wanted to keep things simple and to avoid the shared area becoming a dumping ground, we agreed that we would only include resources that built on prior learning, whilst carefully introducing new learning in a controlled and interleaved way; this approach is intended to make sure that students don't get too far ahead and create misconceptions. 

Make the most of what you have

Ultimately, online learning provision is just another tool to support all stakeholders, and we have made it simple by using what already exists: bringing it together in one place so expectations are clear and everyone has equal opportunities, as far as they possibly can under the current circumstances.

Jay Sturman is assistant principal at Skegness Grammar School, part of the David Ross Education Trust

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