April 22, 2020 Combining academics and emotional support during Distance Learning

Students and teachers at Christ Church Day School jumped right into Distance Learning in March when schools were closed. Academics is a priority with CCDS, but we are also concerned with the emotional needs of our students during this time. Mindfulness activities are encouraged and available on class websites, and our staff has structured the day with many “Brain Breaks”  for the students.  Afternoons are a time for catching up on missed work and participating in the specialty class offerings. PE videos were created to build soccer skills and work on stretching and core muscles. Spanish recorded songs and books engage the students in another language, and Music videos keep the children singing and playing their recorders.  To offer another creative outlet, guided Art videos take the students through the creation of landcapes, geometric drawings, and themed creations.

         In order to keep the community feeling of CCDS, Zoom Chapel is held on Thursday mornings. This is a time for prayers, song, and spiritual messages from our school chaplain. Students sang and participated in the prayers and enjoyed the time together. To add some fun to this time, a Virtual Bingo night was held on Friday. Students and families participated and Fuzziwigs donated the prizes! Mrs. Funk, Head of School, said, “We are all concerned with how our students are feeling during this time. Many are sad and angry at the separation from their friends and teachers, and offering a fun evening of Bingo gave everyone a chance to have fun and see their friends. I know we will do this again soon!”

         The uncertainty of this time is hard on everyone, especially our students. Keeping a routine at home and providing many breaks will ease some of their concern, but listening and compassion at this time is critical. As the Christ Church Day School sign says, “Distance is temporary, our love is forever.”