Quick Transition to Online Learning Boosts Interest
Wednesday, 01 July 2020
Bolton School has seen an increase in enrolment enquiries at its Junior and Infant departments over the past few months after the School’s noticeably smooth transition to online and directed learning. The quick and effective move, which meant learning continued seamlessly was boosted by every pupil having an iPad from age 7 upwards.
Head of the Junior Boys’ School Mrs Faulkner explains: “We moved very quickly to directed learning when lockdown began. We have continued to use a range of Apps to teach the boys and to use a range of live and pre-recorded lessons which means that the boys can refer back to work and manage their pace more easily. Our weekly assemblies have continued and it has been good to see families responding to their key messages, such as environmental impact, kindness and helping others. Assemblies have also allowed us to award commendations to recognise the excellent work that the boys have been doing. There has been a mixture of online and offline work, with an excellent variety of work in the more creative subjects; this is being showcased with the creation of a virtual Y4 concert and a gallery of art sculptures which will be shared. Y6 have even managed to carry on rehearsing for their production and have been designing and making costumes, as well as photographing and videoing themselves to share their work even though we can’t actually perform the play.
Of course we are keen to have the boys in school and around 80% of Y6 has been back for this final half term, even managing a day of outdoor pursuits at the Anderton Centre. Next week we will hold a Keeping in Touch day for each of the other year groups so that they can come in and spend time with friends and teachers before we finish for the summer holidays.”
The Boys’ Division of Bolton School is one of the few Apple Distinguished Schools in the North-West and, across the campus, there has been much innovation in teaching and online. As well as ‘lessons as usual’ there has been celebratory assemblies, charity fundraising events, presentations from alumni, a Prizegiving event, concerts, running and cycling challenges, cake-offs, DoE activities, drama auditions, pastoral care, fun videos posted by teachers, meetings with incoming Y7 students and a World War Two Day. There has even been an ‘offline day’.
Bolton School has remained open all along, firstly for key workers’ children and the vulnerable, and then for Reception, Y1 and Y6 children and in the last week or so, Y10 and Y12 students. The majority of infants (4-7 year olds) are now in school whilst some continue to work from home. Head of the Infant School, Mrs Taylor, said: “All the children, whether in school or at home, have continued to enjoy the varied and high quality education that the school always provides. Staff looked at making the teaching experiences easily accessible from home within a flexible and interesting format, which our parents have really appreciated. All the teachers have delivered stories, assemblies and weekly introductory videos to compliment the home learning activities on the Schools You Tube platform. Both parents and teachers have risen admirably to the new challenges.”
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