Online Learning resources: Middle School
As we embark on the online learning journey together, please use this page as an easy way to keep track of resources, updates and important information.
Our teachers have been working hard to develop a robust, engaging online learning program that is specific for each grade, and our goal is to make this experience as productive, smooth and fun as possible for all of our students and families. Please don't hesitate to reach out if we can help in any way!
- Online Learning Plan -- Middle School
- Student Roles and Responsibilities
- Parent Roles and Responsibilities
- Student Success Resources: Planning Documents and Weekly Newsletters
- Middle School Online Learning FAQ
- Counseling Resources
- All Middle School students will be required to participate in Online Learning Days.
- Teachers will post assignments for each class scheduled to meet that cycle day by 9:00 a.m. in an "Online Learning" folder on their course's Schoology page.
- Teachers will be available for questions by appointment via Google Hangout, Google Meet or by email.
- Students should expect to complete 25-45 minutes of work per class that meets each day and will not have outside homework.
- Advisors will check in with advisees electronically twice a week and Counselors/ARC Support will continue to be available electronically by appointment.
- Questions about online learning and tech access should be directed to Lindsay Kelland, Director of Educational Technology & Libraries (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Student Roles and Responsibilities
- Follow consistent daily routines and timetables (ie: 8:30 a.m. wake up, 9:00 a.m. start, etc).
- Identify an effective work environment.
- Reduce all distractions in your workspace (ie: no cellphones, television, etc)
- Prioritize work to meet timelines and due dates.
- Be proactive! Communicate with teachers or advisors if you require additional support.
- Collaborate and support your classmates in their learning.
Academic Honesty and Integrity
- Students are expected to complete assignments with academic integrity and honesty.
- Students are expected to follow Garrison's Acceptable Use Technology Policy.
Parent Roles and Responsibilities
- Make a plan for consistent daily routines and timetables.
- Encourage times for breaks and physical activity.
- Help your daughter identify an effective work environment.
- Encourage your daughter to communicate with her teachers and advisors.
- Be aware of how much time your daughter is spending online.
- Set clear rules on social media times.
- End each day with a check-in with your daughter.
How long will we be doing Online Learning? We are now expecting to do Online Learning from March 26-April 24. We will keep you posted if anything changes.
Do I need to go online at 9:00 a.m. each morning? We recommend that you go online around 9:00 a.m. to make a plan for your day and see what Live Help Sessions are being offered for your classes. Mrs. Schmidt shared a Planning Document with you, which should help you come up with a plan each morning. There is no right or wrong way to structure your day; find one that works for you and your family!
How will students know what is going on each week? Mrs. Schmidt will continue to email you the Friday Focus and will also send a Monday Memo. Please read these newsletters carefully for important dates, announcements, fun activities and updates.
How will advisory work during Online Learning? Advisors will be setting up times to check in and meet online several times per week. Please do your best to attend and communicate with your advisor if you cannot make it. Please continue to go to your advisor with any questions or if you are struggling; we are here to help!
Will teachers take attendance during Online Learning? Yes! Ms. Stephanie is going to be taking attendance using Schoology. When you log into Schoology to begin your online learning for the day, you will be marked present.
What if I am sick and can't do online learning? Your parents should email Ms. Stephanie and your advisor to let them know. Once you are feeling better, you can email teachers about missed work. Mrs. Parsons is also available to help you organize missed work if you need help. The priority is to get you feeling better!
What if I am having tech difficulties with Wifi/logins/my computer? Don't panic! If this happens, email Mrs. Kelland and she will connect you with someone who can help. If you and your parents have no way to contact Mrs. Kelland, you can leave a voicemail message with the Middle School (410) 559-3281) and someone will get back to you as soon as possible.
When are my assignments due? Ideally, you should try your best to complete assignments by 9:00 a.m. the following school day. If you are going to need more time or need an extension, please reach out to your teacher via email! We can be flexible with this, and the key is communication. Some classes may involve longer term projects, in which case deadlines will be communicated by individual teachers.
Will there be a time we can talk to our teachers about questions? Yes! Teachers will be offering optional class meetings and drop-in Help Sessions via Google Meet, in addition to being available by appointment.
What if I can't meet during my class drop-in period and I have questions? If the drop-in time for your class doesn't work for you, please let your teachers know, and we'll find another time to talk!
Can I assume my class drop-in time is going to be the same every day? Not necessarily! Please make sure you're checking Schoology for information about online meeting times.
Do I have to participate in online meetings or help sessions? No. We encourage you to take advantage of these opportunities when needed and to stay connected with teachers and classmates. We understand that all students have different outside responsibilities and schedules at home; live sessions are encouraged but are not required.
How long should assignments be taking me? For Middle School, assignments should take you 25-45 minutes per class per day.
What if it's taking me more time to complete the assignment? If an assignment is taking you longer than forty five minutes, stop wherever you are and submit what you have for the day. Then let your teacher know via email how far you got in the assignment.
What about assessments? You can expect to have a couple of formative assessments during the remainder of Quarter 3, which ends on April 3rd. Please stay tuned for information about Quarter 4; we are figuring this out together.
What if I am feeling anxious or overwhelmed? We are here to support you! Please reach out to your advisor or to Mrs. Fleck to set up a time to talk.
As we have begun our first few days of distance learning, I wanted to take a moment to touch base and provide guidance during this transition. When faced with challenging times such as the one in front of us, it can be marked with an abundance of feelings and emotions. Take notice of these feelings, validating and not minimizing how you are or your children are feeling. In addition, keep in mind the importance of acknowledging and verbalizing our stress and anxiety with the supportive people around you.
It is our goal to help guide you and your family through these challenging times. As we work hard to partner with you to ensure that your child’s academic needs are met, we are also mindful of their social-emotional needs, as they directly impact learning. We know that during these times, it will be important to create and maintain routines and positive coping strategies to help guide our days. Here are a few tips to assist:
Provide a routine:
Children thrive off of routines, rituals, and consistency. Having some sense of normalcy and control, such as being able to anticipate what’s happening next in their day, will foster a sense of security. Provide a schedule of what the day will look like, including your child in the planning process. Their sense of control is important.
Try positive coping strategies:
Check-in and talk with your child about the “new normal” and how they are feeling overall. Provide social connection with friends (virtual times), watch silly videos, listen to music, while balancing screen time with outside time. Engaging in happy distractions such as playing with things they haven’t used in a while. Taking care to eat and sleep, exercise, having a normal waking time, hygiene routines, etc. Limit exposure to news, as it can be ambiguous and overwhelming to have too much information. Provide proper information and answer questions in an age appropriate way. Enjoy spending quality time together.
Despite this being a stressful time, it’s important to remain calm, provide a sense of comfort in your tone, listening without having to provide all the answers. Understand that flexibility is key, we’re all in this together -- we can review, assess and adjust as needed. Reassure this is temporary and we are resilient, while listening carefully to their concerns and supporting them when they are worried.
Receiving support and care from others is important in helping us cope with these challenging times. A few articles of support are listed below. I am here to talk through any questions or concerns in helping manage these stressful situations and provide resources of support. Please email me if you feel the need to talk and we can schedule a phone or video call.
Stay up-to-date with the school's COVID-19 response and resources page, including FAQ and copies of all communications.