Jonathon* and his mom watched from the front door as the car from Cunningham’s CIRCLE Academy-Vermilion (CAV) program pulled up in front of their house. He beamed and waved as one of his favorite staff members, Emily, who serves as CAV’s Lead Refocus Paraprofessional, unpacked a table, lawn chairs, the rewards choice board, a Chromebook and other school supplies and proceeded to set up the day’s classroom on his front lawn.
After making sure Jonathan's temperature was taken, his mask was on and the COVID-19 protocol questions were answered, she pulled up the internet hot spot on her phone and they got to work. Jonathon needed a little more attention with math this week, so Emily worked with him on math worksheets along with his online assignments using the Chromebook. After successfully completing assignments, Jonathon excitedly made a selection from the rewards choice board to celebrate his accomplishments.
This is just one example of how CAV staff has been dynamic and creative in their development of the remote learning process over the course of the past six months. Like all schools in the area, CAV began remote learning in March due to the COVID-10 pandemic. Beginning with the distribution of written packets and phone calls to students, to socially-distanced home visits, to expanding into programming with Google Meet and Google Classrooms to start the new school year, CAV staff had made great strides in their ability to provide learning opportunities and give students and families the chance to work directly with staff in an interactive and meaningful way.
"We’ve gotten creative with it and are making sure every kid is taken care of," Emily said. "We understand it's going to be more effort on our part but we want to do it."
After Labor Day, CAV moved into a hybrid approach which includes a combination of in-person learning and remote learning for most students.
"We want to give parents the tools to be teachers at home," Emily said. "The parents hear the verbiage we use and the prompting which they can then use that with interactions at home."
Click on the image below to hear from Emily and Barbara, CAV’s Academic Coordinator, about how CAV staff continue to develop creative educational solutions for students like Jonathon this school year.
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*Our stories are real but names have been changed to protect the privacy of our youth.