Distance Learning at ECS
What You Should Know:
- ECS Teachers began providing Online Distance Learning for our 6th-8th students within 24 hours and to our K-5th students within 48 hours after our building closed in mid-March due to COVID-19 precautions. During this time, we are working hard so our students are provided an education with the same academic focus and goals that our in-the-classroom program offers. Our teachers are carrying out daily instruction, including face-to-face teaching online and video lessons with the use of Microsoft TEAMS, which helps us stay connected with each of our students. A key component of our middle school program (for grades 6th-8th) is our 1:1 computing program. Students are assigned personal laptops at the beginning of each year, and learn to be quite adept at using them in each class to view, complete, and turn-in daily assignments. This practice has helped us tremendously as we have moved to a completely online teaching platform. For our families with elementary students (especially those with multiple children at ECS), we have provided laptops to those who had need, in order to offer our online education in an equitable way for each child.
- The ECS Preschool staff have created ways to continue their connection and teaching with our youngest students, even as their programs are not as easy to transition to online or distance learning models. They have sent home fun, hands-on, activities to keep kids learning about their abc’s, numbers, colors, and shapes. Teachers have set up all-class calls with their families, so kids could connect with them and each other on screen. Kids might listen in as their teacher reads a book, or sing along as the teacher leads them in song. We know this personal touch is so important in this time of uncertainty, and we will continue to reach out in love to our students and families as best as we are able.
- All-school spiritual life lessons, typically provided in our weekly chapel gatherings, have also moved online. Our Director of Student Ministries, Todd Green, has created engaging video lessons for our students. As always, they are designed with children in mind, and continue to cover topics within our yearly theme, being “Kingdom Builders”. We are continuing to learn about the building blocks of our Christian faith together, and how to put our biblical knowledge about things like Jesus’ love, right relationships, sacrifice, and eternal life into practice.
- Our fantastic Parent-Teacher-Fellowship (PTF) offers daily online prayer meetings on Zoom. We know that COVID-19 was no surprise to God, and believe He is with us to sustain and strengthen us as we journey through this time together. We are so grateful for technology that affords our parents and teachers the opportunity each day to gather together online, so we can come before our Lord and lift our praises and prayer requests before Him together. If you have a prayer request or praise to share, please let us know! Contact Emily Fennell to be connected to our prayer meetings.
- We value the partnerships we have with our parent community! We have relied on feedback from our parents, several of whom serve on our Board of Directors, as we have made the switch to distance learning. We have held, and continue to hold, regular meetings to discuss ways to provide the best online educational program we can, and are always trying to improve. We have surveyed our entire ECS community on what’s working well, and what could be better, and will continue to do so regularly. We are in this together, and know our successes thus far are built on the strength of our relationships, which have always been foundational at ECS.
- We will continue our distance learning plan through June 12th, our previously-scheduled last day, or until we are able to return to our campus. We are working to provide some end-of-year activities to celebrate the accomplishments of our incredible students in this year of upheaval, especially those of our 8th graders. While the activities may yet have to be virtual, or carried out with appropriate social distancing, we want to do everything we can to connect with our community and rejoice over milestones we have worked together to achieve.
- The Eastside Christian School (ECS) campus is closed for the rest of the 2019-20 school year. We are following the decision of Washington State Governor Jay Inslee, who made the announcement to extend school closures to keep the spread of coronavirus reduced. ECS building rentals are suspended until further notice (contact Nicole Patten with questions).
From our wonderful Moms-in-Prayer group, who invite you to prayerfully read and find solace in the Word of God:
6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
“We want to again compliment your staff for all they’ve done this year to pivot and quickly build a virtual school. Hats off to the entire staff for working so diligently to maintain community and high levels of learning. As parents working from home, we see the communication we need and have a teacher of the highest quality, as evidenced in her relationships with students (lots of love notes and gentle pushing to excellence) and in academics.”
~ ECS Parent, April, 2020
“I have been so happy and appreciative of the online school instruction my son has received from ECS. The conversion to online classes was seamless, the work load is manageable, the students are kept busy, and their assignments are corrected quickly. The teachers have also been AMAZING! They are readily available to answer questions, teach classes and encourage the kids. Their communication to the students and their teaching have been first class.”
~ ECS Parent, April, 2020