Learning From Home
In 2020, Fettes College and Fettes Prep’s Summer Term looked a little different. Due to lockdown in the UK, all pupils and staff embraced a fully virtual term. Learning From Home was both positive and challenging for pupils and staff alike. New skills were learnt at an exponential rate and technical abilities increased dramatically. Here we reflect on some of the lessons learnt and the serendipitous outcomes.
From M Form to 2nd Form, our pupils had an age-specific full day timetable which was divided into 30-minute sections. This provided structure with built-in flexibility so learning fitted around the family dynamic. Each day started with a pre-recorded Fettes Fit PE session followed by a variety of lessons and a live tutor meeting where pupils caught up with friends, chatted about how they were feeling, shared work they were proud of and discussed any issues from the subjects set the day before. Tutor meetings were held via Microsoft Teams and took place in small groups of around four.
Our lessons were delivered on OneNote and started with an explanation (video, audio or text). Each task was taught in a variety of ways including demonstrations, PowerPoint, quizzes, worksheets and topic videos. As term progressed, we introduced live lessons in Maths, Science, French and Latin, with other subjects organising occasional live lessons. Teachers were on email throughout the working day to check how their pupils were managing, mark work and give lots of positive feedback and encouragement. Within OneNote our pupils had access to digital jotters and collaboration spaces where they could share ideas. To keep community connections alive there were also fun pages including book recommendations, life skills, set design, sunflower growing and eco modelling, to name just a few!
Virtual assemblies full of fun challenges, birthday messages and updates, were held three times a week and the school Chaplain recorded a Chapel service each Saturday. The Arts thrived during lockdown. Our pupils enjoyed over 150 individual weekly music lessons virtually, every pupil was taught new artistic skills and techniques via video, and all enthusiastically embraced Drama Fit sessions. We even attended a virtual theatrical night out.
During the rollercoaster ride of the Spring Term, pupils, parents and staff were catapulted into a virtual teaching and learning environment, not quite knowing where the next twist or turn was going to take them!
This term included unbelievable resilience shown by our pupils; projects that particularly inspired the pupils; fantastic pieces of work; crazy tutor group times; and a whole host of photography and videos that lifted our spirits.
Maillie is in M Form, our youngest year group for our 7-8 year olds. Here is Maillie’s Learning From Home timetable for Monday. Like all pupils, she starts with Fettes Fit followed by Assembly and Tutor Time with her form teacher, Miss Stanley, who also takes her for Maths and English. The remaining sessions of the day; History, Art and French are taught by subject specialists. On Mondays, Maillie’s school day finishes with quiet reading time.
Maxime is in 1st Form for our 11-12 year old pupils and this is his timetable for Tuesday. Like Maillie, his day starts with Fettes Fit, Assembly and then Tutor Time when Maxime can chat with his tutor, Mr Pettinger and classmates. Maxime’s cat, Lichi, always appears as a special guest! Lessons taught by subject specialists follow for the remainder of the school day. We are going to take a look at what Maxime has been learning in two of his timetabled sessions, English and Science.
Fettes Parents on Learning From Home
"We are impressed and delighted by what you have all managed to achieve over the last few weeks in order to conjure up an online offering for our daughter and indeed all of the Prep School pupils."
" Our son is very engaged with the tremendous Fettes Fit videos, his tutorials with Mr Bywater, his drumming and saxophone lessons, videos from the Headmaster and Chaplain - such imaginative delivery."
"We would like to say an absolutely massive thank you to all the staff who have developed their IT skills at impressive speed in order to suddenly cope with teaching in this unexpected new way."
Fettes Pupils on Learning From Home
“I am getting better at using the computer and have enjoyed using it for all my projects”
“Tutor Time is so much fun, we can see each other and sometimes we have special baking sessions when we can talk and cook”
“I love art and love creating things with my mum and dad”
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