It felt very different, but it proved to be tremendously successful. Over the past several days, for the first time since the pandemic closed the school last March, students and teachers have engaged in meaningful learnng learning activities on the MIS campus.
On Wednesday, Dec. 2 and Friday, Dec. 4, many DP-2 students arrived on campus to participate in hands-on practical work for their sciences classes. This practical work is very important: it is a specific requirement in all the sciences (chemistry, physics, biology and environmental stytems and societies). The school prepared well in advance of this day by implementing all conceivable safeguards against the spread of the virus, going above and beyond all legal requirements to ensure as far as possible the safety of our students.
Out of necessity, the protocols were very different. The classes consisted of only a few students at a tie. Students were required to have temperature checks and a completed self-declaraion regarding their health before coming on to campus. Social distancing was strictly observed, as was proper mask wearing (covering both nose and mouth at all times). No eating or drinking took place in school; students took their breaks outside, again, being sure to maintain social distance.
On Monday, December 9, the MYP-5 class had it’s turn. The focus for this day was to allow students to receive support and guidance in working on their individual personal projects. The same rules (social distancing, temperature checks, mask wearing, etc.) were applied.
There were many very positive take-aways from these on-campus experiences. They provided us with a very good “road map” for re-opening: we can see much more clearly how things are going to work when we return in larger numbers. The students and teachers were able to get a glimpse of what is likely to be our “new normal”, at least for the immediate future. Finally, and most importantly, students were able to benefit from valuable, active learning activities that cannot be replicated in the virtual environment. We came, we learned, and we did so safely. It is our hope to repeat this “recipe” with more students in the weeks to come.
Patrick McCarthy, Secondary Principal