And so, just like that, the summer holidays have arrived. After a rather unorthodox summer Term, we can now look back at how the digital takeover unfolded and appreciate the amount of patience and cooperation shown from our parents and pupils. Schooling took a rather swift and abrupt change as lockdown kicked in and we a as school had to figure out how to continue the usual high levels of interaction and education through an online medium. With thanks to both technology and an adaptable and fast thinking staff, we were able to maintain the Eaton Square community spirit from our own homes.
The use of Microsoft Teams quickly became an essential tool of the working day, pupils were given their own personal usernames and passwords, which allowed them to sign in and access the pre-recorded videos. All of the live lessons also took place on Teams, which allowed the teacher to share their screen, show the children PowerPoints, work on a collaborative whiteboard etc. whilst talking to them. The children could join the meetings if they were logged in to Teams at the correct time and the teachers could also ‘call’ them to invite them to the lesson.
Screens were very important during this time, but getting off the screens was also important! Our remote learning timetable incorporated many different activities and exercise breaks to assure that the children could spend some of their time away from their screens.
The summer term also saw the introduction of Challenge Tuesday. This was a new weekly challenge that encouraged the children to get creative, stay active or fundraise for charity. The pupils created rainbows and hung them in their windows to spread positivity in their local areas, we threw the positive paper plane to each other through a video for mental health awareness week and completed a variety of fundraising activities for the 2.6 challenge in aid of Chiltern Music Therapy. These were just a few examples of the challenges that took place, they were a great way to keep the community together by working towards one goal as a collective or sharing everyone’s work as a group. You can find some of the video montages on our Instagram page!
The word community has already come up a few times already in this article, it was something that we strived to retain even from our homes. We continued to run our weekly assemblies by presenting them in a video format. Led alternatively by Mr Hepher and Mrs Watt, these morning assemblies provided the platform for whole school announcements of certificates and house points. The assemblies also allowed the school to come together for hymns, and even gave individual classes the chance to create their own assembly contributions.
Sports Day took place on the 19th of June, and although some children were at home and some in the school building, everyone still got involved! The children wore their house colours with pride and took part in a variety of events that had been organised by Head of PE, Mr Ashby. As well as taking part in activities the children were also seen waving their national flags as they cheered on their fellow house representatives.
The previous term was undoubtedly our most unusual to date and presented an entirely new challenge to the normal school life. We would like to say a huge thank you to all of the parents and pupils for your support, your kind words and understanding nature reinforced how strong the Eaton Square community really is. We hope you have a fantastic summer break, and we look forward to seeing you again in September, to our Year 6s, good luck with your next chapter!