New Era launch virtual summer schools

By Vicky Hart - 18 Jun, 2020
4 Minutes Read

In recent weeks there has been increased pressure for schools to intensify their summer learning provision.

Throughout the last 3 months, it is estimated that 2 million children have done almost no home learning during lockdown. Coupled with the complete disparity in school provision, it is no wonder that there is such a huge difference in the impact that the pandemic has had on learning.

It isn’t surprising and it is nobody’s fault. In an earlier article, we talked about the struggles both schools and parents have had in adjusting to a remote learning environment with just a matter of days to prepare.

Summer learning loss and some!

Under normal circumstances, summer learning loss is always a hot topic, however most schools won’t spend time on planning summer work outside of the odd project and there are substantiated reasons why.

Summer ‘break’ should be just that. For both teachers and pupils, the school year has been long. Both need a period to re-charge and prepare for the next step in learning.

This year has thrown a complete curveball. Many teachers have had no break, continuing to teach key worker children during Easter and half term break and increasing the virtual support they have had to give to parents and carers. They have had to adjust to a completely different way of teaching, grasping new technologies and adjusting to what is happening in the world.

Children will be moving up to the next academic year, new teachers, new classrooms and potentially a new way of learning. Some preparation for this over the summer will undoubtedly pay dividends.

So, should schools be offering summer schools this year?

Here at New Era we think there is an important opportunity to implement a summer learning programme, which will boost summer learning but requires little to no teacher intervention over the summer break.

Somehow a balance needs to be struck between giving the children time to relax and recharge after a difficult and unsettling year, whilst trying to help plug any gaps in their knowledge, or at the very least not forgetting everything they have been previously taught!

New Era Virtual Summer Schools 2020

We have worked hard to design virtual summer schools using DB Primary.

With approximately five hours of learning each week, pupils can log in whenever and wherever they want (providing they have internet access) and complete their learning. They will be served curriculum-based tasks from a huge library of activities, not only that but teachers can make and set their own personalised activities too. These are organised into sequences with our learning pathways and aim to keep children motivated, while allowing them to practise ‘year group’ specific skills in the run up to their new year.

Minimal teacher time required

Teachers simply need to set up the pathway in advance and DB Primary will take care of the rest. The activities will be presented to children to complete when it suits them and according to the schedule. They are all automatically marked with immediate feedback for the child.

Our self-marking activities mean that teachers can set the learning pathways at the end of summer term and feel sure that the children are able to continue to boost learning before the return in September – allowing them the time to rest and prepare for their own next intake.

Using the DB Primary to help aid transition

As part of your virtual summer school you can also use DB Primary to help introduce the children to their new teachers. Embed videos showing their new classrooms, welcome talks from their new teacher and details around what to expect from the next year.

Find out how you could offer virtual summer schools with DB Primary

For more information on DB Primary and our virtual summer schools, please contact us.

Author: Vicky Hart

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