By the time ESY came around in July I had made all of the mistakes and came across all of the hurdles that distance learning had to offer me. I was ready for a fresh start and for more organization!
I made a schedule using @thecreativeclassroom digital decor and I was hoping that I would be able to keep the schedule consistent throughout the 4 weeks of ESY. Of course, after the first week we had to make some minor changes, but after that we were able to keep the same weekly schedule.
Our schedule consisted of 3 main activities; circle time, special activity and small groups. Here are more details about each one of those;
CIRCLE TIME: Every day at 9am
For circle time, I used my morning meeting editable slides that are in my TPT store. We went through a typical circle time routine like we would at school. Circle time lasted about 20 minutes. We did circle time with another class is ESY so that is why there are 2 teachers listed under circle time on the schedule.
–Focus question and quick lesson from curriculum
**I highly recommend reviewing your schedule for the day at the end of your circle time or morning meeting. The parents loved being able to see it so that they knew what their child had to do for the rest of the day. I even highlighted the specific day with a yellow box.
SPECIAL ACTIVITY: Tuesday-Friday at 10am
During this time we did FUN activities. Special activities typically lasted about 15-20 minutes.
- Activities we did during this time:
- Read aloud
- You can hold the book up to your camera or use an OSMO
- Scavenger hunts
- I used the resource from my TPT store
- Directed drawings
- You can find for free online or make it up
- Do it live or screen-share a cosmic kids video on YouTube
- Share a pet/stuffed animal
- Or any show and tell
- You can do it live or use videos on abcya.com
- Read aloud
SMALL GROUPS: Monday-Thursday starting at 11am
For ESY we had to see each student for one hour every day. Circle time and special activity took care of that but I still wanted to see my students in small groups. That is how my students learn best at school, and that is when I get to work on their individual skills so I still wanted to do them. I would see 3-4 students at one time, 2 times a week. Small groups were no longer than 15 minutes.
For every single small group I either used my OSMO, BOOM cards or interactive PDFs.
For more information about the activities I would do with my OSMO click HERE.
I organized my BOOM Cards in the BOOM library by making folders. On the left side of your BOOM library click ‘new folder’. You can organize them by category, skill, students, etc.
I used my iPad to project all of this. I have directions in my ‘HOW TO USE THE OSMO’ blog post for connecting your iPad to your computer. The reason I loved using my iPad AND my computer is because I was able to keep my students in full screen on my computer, instead of splitting the screen between them in the google meet and the activity we were doing.
Q: Did you seperate your AM and PM classes?
A: In google classroom I had both classes combined. For circle time and special activity I also combined both classes. For small groups I separated them with the students that they were familiar with since it was a more intimate setting.
Q: How did you know if it was too much for your students and their parents
A: During ESY we were required to send a weekly survey to the parents to get their feedback on the work, sessions, etc. I highly recommend doing something like this. It was very helpful.
Q: How did you take data during distance learning?
A: I mostly took anecdotal notes on how my students were doing. I could not take specific data for their IEP goals like we typically do because most of them have all social goals. During distance learning we were not able to work on most of their goals.
Q: Did you have paraprofessionals during ESY?
A: My specific class did not but others did. If I did moving forward I probably would have my para take data via a google form. They can join my sessions, split their screen with the students and the data google form and take data via a google form that I would make for them.
Q: Would you meet with each student prior to this schedule starting?
A: ABSOLUTELY! If I had new students I would meet with each family individually at the beginning of the school year. Even if it is just for 10 minutes.