Although there are many negatives of distance learning, there are some positive effects to note as well. Although the rapid shift to distance learning was frustrating for many teachers at first, 87% of teachers reported in an EdWeek Research study that their ability to use educational technology has improved and they plan to use their newfound skills even when school reopens. Teachers have been pushed to innovate and create online resources such as youtube videos, cloze notes, online assignments, and other materials to teach students with and without disabilities outside of school. Although teacher’s opinions about technology are improving they are not quite as positive as administrators’ outlook. On another positive note though many students were given more access to technology and computers than before the pandemic. Greater access to 1 to 1 computing will make high quality teaching easier. Additionally, teachers have had to deal with a wide range of tech issues and as a result have become a lot more competent at troubleshooting tech problems. This skill will help them when they return to in person teaching as well. No one would argue though that teachers do need professional development and training on how to incorporate computers into instruction, but the pandemic may speed up the incorporation of technology into instruction for students across the board rather just in wealthier districts. We would love to hear your views on the impact of technology on your child or teen’s education within the last few months.
In order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus schools must adapt to changing conditions. Social distancing will involve limiting class size in order to keep students 6 feet apart, closing communal spaces, and restricting non-essential visitors. This is the antithesis of how schools usually operate as well as the antithesis to their core values of socialization and collaboration. Although schools cannot 100% eliminate the possible spread of the coronavirus, they can work to reduce the risk as much as possible. These are the challenges and decisions that school leaders must make to make ensure students have a safe return to in-person schooling.
School officials must factor in not only the logistics but the cost. Schools will need to have deep cleaning on a regular basis which may require increasing janitors’ hours. Staff needs to have accessible hand sanitizer for all students in the classrooms, bathrooms, lunch rooms. Also, smaller class sizes may require teachers to work more hours increasing their pay. This could cost districts millions of extra dollars.
In addition to cost, school and district leaders need to consider the new school rules. Should students and staff be required to wear masks all day? Is this safe? Should schools screen for fevers before allowing students and staff to enter? How will high risk staff and students be protected? These are just some of the questions that districts need to consider in their reopening plans.
Schedules must be changed in order to ensure that 6 feet distance can be accommodated in busses, hallways, cafeterias and classrooms. What will this look like? Some schools are planning a hybrid approach that combines distance learning with in person learning. Some other options include, a multi-track system, a staggered school day, a “bubble” method that keeps students in the same groups, a cyclical lockdown strategy, and converting to a year-round schedule. Some of these options may be used simultaneously.
While this is not a simple challenge and may have numerous solutions, the US needs to compete as schools around the world are reopening and employing strategies from opening one day a week to requiring all students to wear masks. Rules and regulations may look very different from district to district which could also widen the education gap depending on where you live. To say the least, It will be an interesting return to school.
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Just because you are an adult and not taking college classes does not mean you can’t learn new skills! Beach Cities Tutoring is offering discounted summer rates on tutoring for adults in the following areas: computer coding, screenwriting, essay writing, creative writing, piano lessons, Spanish tutoring, French tutoring, all levels of math tutoring, business finance, and Chemistry tutoring. We will customize the sessions to your interests and current skill level as well as work with your schedule to match you with the best tutor fit.
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Summer is a great time to work on college applications and essays! Beach Cities Tutors can help you get a head start on college applications and write the perfect college essay. They can also help you adjust your essay to fit different universities’ prompts. As college entrance becomes more and more competitive, your essay is a key component in making you stand out! Don’t wait:)!
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So many students struggle with math, especially Common Core style! Whether your child didn’t get a firm grasp on last year’s math concepts due to Covid-19 or just wants to get a great start for the new school year, Beach Cities Tutoring is offering summer math review or preview sessions for all levels of math Kindergarten-5th as well as Pre-Algebra, Algebra, Geometry, Integrated Math I, II, and III, Algebra 2, Pre-Calc, Statistics, Business Calculus, Financial Literacy/ Consumer Math, AP Calculus and other college level math. We can provide materials or if you have your own that works too. We will individualize curriculum and use different strategies that are most beneficial for the individual student. Tutoring can take place in your home, backyard or online. You get to choose how often and when you meet. Our contract does NOT lock you into a certain amount of months or sessions. Having a strong math foundation will not only help your child in future math and science classes but also in life.
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I hope you are hanging in there with zoom school! If you need any support, we have tutors that offer online as well as in person tutoring using safety precautions in all subject for all grade levels as well as test prep. Assuming the virus is under control, we will be offering the below in person. If the virus is not contained and/or you wish to have online tutoring this is no problem. Below are some of the amazing summer opportunities. Since many students have suffered during distance learning with a whole class, we can absolutely catch them up and review as well as preview new material for the upcoming or past year. Please do not hesitate to ask any questions you have and we will certainly try to accommodate your requests. Wishing you and your family a safe and healthy summer.
Ivie and the Beach Cities Tutoring Team
Summer Writer’s Workshop Private or Small Group Classes
Struggling in writing??? Difficulty organizing your thoughts? Agonizing over grammar mistakes?Beach Cities Tutoring offers summer writing workshops to help students with all aspects of Common Core Writing. Writing workshops will address the following topics, are lead by credentialed teachers and tailored by grade level. Writing workshops can be conducted one on one or with small groups if you have friends that are in the same grade level.
* Reading/analyzing text* Brainstorming and organizing ideas using graphic organizers* Writing structure (creating engaging hooks, writing topic/claim, evidence, elaboration, conclusions)* Editing and Revision of essays* Expository, Persuasive, and Narrative writing
Launchpad Reading Camp (Grades K-4)
Beach Cities Tutoring is offering Intensive Summer Reading intervention classes with a certificated RBUSD teacher. Whether your child is currently struggling in reading or just needs continued practice to maintain their current reading level, this program will help. Students will receive instruction using the The Fountas & Pinnell Leveled Literacy Intervention System (LLI) to target reading, writing, and fluency building.
There will be two summer sessions offered daily! Mornings from 9-11am or afternoon 1-3pm. Sessions begin in July: Session #1 July 6-10 and 13-17 Session #2 July 20-24 and 27-31. Enrollment will be limited to 4 students per class to ensure amazing results. FIRST COME FIRST SERVE. Location to be announced, but classes most likely will be held at the Manhattan Beach Library. All materials will be provided and students will only need to bring pencils, scissors, and a writing journal.
Summer is the perfect time for Test Prep. If your child is going into 10th, 11th or 12th grade, summer test prep can greatly improve a student’s comfort level and test scores. We will recommend the best test prep books and teach students general and specific test taking strategies as well as target specific concepts that they are struggling with in the comfort of your own home. Students will take practice tests on their own time so the time with the tutor can be used most effectively. Don’t wait! Inquire about SAT and ACT prep now. Preferred tutors will fill up quickly. For the ISEE, we have tutors who specialize in all levels (Lower, Middle and Upper Level ISEE).
Book Clubs and Reading Comprehension Workshops
Many middle and high school students are asked to read summer novels. Beach Cities Tutoring can help lead interactive reading groups and help students highlight important information, analyze key concepts and help with annotation for future writing assignments. For elementary students, we offer reading workshops that will help your child improve their active reading comprehension and vocabulary strategies. This is crucial in ensuring they succeed in all academic subjects. Especially with the Common Core curriculum, reading and writing are heavily intertwined in all subject areas, including Science and Math. We can also assess your child’s current reading level for an additional cost. We also offer facilitated fun book clubs for elementary students to discuss and talk about literature.
Summer Spanish Workshops!
We offer Spanish tutoring for all levels including those 4 years old through university level. Our native speakers make learning Spanish fun and ensure your child will be able to read, write and speak. Most 4 year universities require 3-4 years of a foreign language and being able to speak Spanish will also make your child/teen more competitive in a highly competitive job market. You do not need to be enrolled in a Spanish class but we do also tutor students who are taking summer school or need help reviewing past year material.
Beach Cities Tutoring offers tutoring in C++,Java, AP Java, data structures, algorithms, and discrete math with college graduates who majored in Computer Science.
Have a pre-schooler entering Kindergarten??? We can help prepare your child with the skills necessary to succeed in Kindergarten. We have preschool teachers and credentialed teachers on staff who will develop a program that will include the teaching of letter recognition, beginning sounds, number recognition, counting, cutting, reading readiness skills, shapes, colors and fine motor skills. Activities and learning games will be short and fun to keep youngsters engaged and excited about learning!
Middle School Study Skills
Worried that your student doesn’t have the study skills to survive in middle school! No fear! We offer programs to teach students organization and study skills that will help them in all of their academic classes and life including time management, goal setting, study techniques, note-taking, binder/planner organization, and more.
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As a pretty traditional teacher for the last 17 years, I never thought that I would be teaching online from home. In fact, when I first heard we were switching to online learning I was scared to death. Yes, I work in a technology charter school, but that didn’t mean that I was ready to give up the personal face to face interaction with my students that I had always thrived upon.
So my next question was what should the school day look like? Taking pride in my time management skills and always making the most of every moment of my day, I considered should students
- Follow a typical school day schedule in which all instruction happens for all students at the same time, also known as synchronous education
- Follow a modified or reduced hour schedule (also synchronous)
- ,Have flexible learning time in which they can access videos and work on assignments at their own pace, also known as asynchronous.
Although there are positives and negatives of all these options, depending on the type of student one of the options may be way more advantageous than the others.
However, Many experts believe that a combination of option b and c benefit students the most because let’s be honest, so much time is wasted during a typical school day and in addition all students learn at different rates, in different ways, and have different attention spans. Therefore, it only makes sense to have a reduced hour school day in which teachers deliver condensed to the point instruction without a lot of fluff and then allow students who need or want extra reinforcement to access video lessons and complete assignments on their own time given a specific deadline to submit their work. The scheduled learning time could also be used for collaboration with small groups (zoom breakout groups). Another benefit of this type of instruction is that it puts more responsibility on the student and will ultimately help prepare students for college in which they need to be self motivated and proactive in their own learning. It’s a win win or is it?
Students will have to take ownership of their education, but are all students ready for this? This is where private tutoring can be extremely beneficial because let’s face it not all students are self motivated nor can they grasp difficult concepts super quickly. Additionally, some students need more one on one support and reteaching. For those students who struggle to pay attention teachers, should try to involve and require student participation as much as possible during the scheduled learning time, whether it is having students answer questions through zoom’s chat feature or reteach.
One of the biggest benefits of a shorter school day and more flexible student paced assignments is that students will have more time to exercise, employ their creative talents such as painting, drawing, writing, as well as explore their own interests. I think with this extra time teachers should require students to learn a new skill and write about it to share with their classmates. Making sure students use their free time wisely versus watching mindless tv, playing video games or spending hours on social media will ensure students value their alone time and not take it for granted.
So is distance learning here to stay and if it is what should educators consider?
An important fact to consider in planning distance learning is student age. I have mostly been examining this issue through a high school teacher’s lense, but middle and elementary students can also benefit from shorter periods of instruction and assignments that can be completed at their own pace as well. Unfortunately, they will likely require a lot more support from parents or private tutors. Subject matter is another issue to examine when looking at distance learning. English is often easier to use flexible (asynchronous learning) as it involves students reading, thinking and writing on their own; whereas, Math should be taught in a synchronous period so students can ask questions and see teachers model problems. Right now we have the ability to experiment with distance learning to see what works best for teachers and students, but given the choice I think distance learning could be the positive change in the Brave New World of education that is here to stay.