Weekly Notes from the Head of Lower School, 3/25

Dear Families,

Congratulations! We have made it through the first full week of Distance Learning. Like me, I’m sure you have encountered some challenges as you adjust to the “new normal.” Yesterday, teachers facilitated some virtual face to face time with students to stay connected and have the opportunity to interact with each other. We plan on doing this more frequently.

I came across an article by Dr. Lisa Damour, a clinical psychologist who specializes in dealing with stress and anxiety. She had the following tips for families as they balance work, Distance Learning, and the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Create routines- kids need the world to be predictable. This routine doesn’t have to be rigid, it should be consistent as much as possible, as it adds a sense of normalcy for all of us

  • Find time to get outdoors

  • Make sure you and your kids get enough sleep

  • Accept that this is out of our control

Video Project for Social MediaIf you would like to help promote the school by sharing your experience with #PVSDistanceLearning thus far, please send a short video clip (up to 15 seconds) of your student to our Director of Admissions and Marketing, Abby Sturgeon at asturgeon@pvs.org. Please note that Ms. Sturgeon will use these video clips to share on social media and show off how skilled our student body and teaching staff is by moving to virtual learning - we are still one of the only local schools offering this program! Please include the following in your video clips:

1. Child’s Name

2. Grade

3. Favorite Part of PVS Distance Learning (ex. the creative projects the teachers are providing, your favorite virtual class/subject, how easily your teachers/classmates have transitioned to online learning, collaborating with your classmates, etc.)
If you'd like to participate, please send Abby the short video clip via email by Thursday, March 26 at 3:00 pm.

Here is a link to Skype a Scientist: click This is an incredible site and an opportunity for your kids to interact with scientists all over the world. There are also links to some scheduled live streams. Today, for example, at 11:00 am, Michelle Rodrigues is talking about her work and research with primates. Tomorrow, Kristin Lear talks about her work with bat conservation!

Hopefully, students are taking breaks from their screens and continuing to read. I know that you may not have books at home and libraries are closed. Here is a site that has FREE online audiobooks for kids of all ages. You can sign up for a free account: book. This site is also free and features celebrities reading aloud to kids: Storyline. Last, CommonSense Media has a list of free events and activities. They are updating it often: Click

The teachers are working hard to create lessons and activities to reinforce concepts and continue the learning process. Distance Learning is new for everyone. Every student is different, and every home situation is unique. Please know that while there are expectations that students complete the work, the deadlines and due dates are flexible. You or the student needs to communicate with your teacher so that adjustments can be made. We are all in this together. Thank you for your patience.

Have a great week, and please reach out to me anytime.

Cordially,

Francene Fisher

Head of Lower School