Bolton School Junior Girls

Quick Transition to Online Learning Boosts Interest

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 Girls’ School Mrs Laverick explains: “We moved very quickly to directed learning when lockdown began. Whilst we continued to see the children of key workers, the vast majority of girls transitioned to the new normal very quickly. Of course, we have seen some Y6 girls coming into school in recent weeks and we look forward to seeing other pupils before too long but, overall, I have been delighted at how well we have adapted to home-working. In many ways lessons have continued as normal, they have just been online. Teachers have used Zoom to talk to pupils and we have used a variety of apps to share and mark work on. For those that need it we also use a variety of e-learning platforms to provide extension work. Parents have been excellent in helping make sure things run smoothly; I think many have enjoyed the insight into how their girls learn and have been hugely appreciative at how little interruption to learning there has been. We are also blessed with lots of space at Bolton School and, for those pupils across the campus that have come in, this has been gratefully utilised. Across the School, pupils have been making excellent progress despite the lockdown.”

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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