Alternative Learning for Parents
This is a challenging time for our entire society. We are all likely experiencing concern for ourselves and our loved ones. During this emergency closure, there is no way to fully replicate an at-school experience within an online learning environment, nor should we try to do so. Our teachers are working very hard to learn about and develop online learning experiences for your children. Please have patience as they work through this process!
As we activate online learning for Webster Groves students, our goals are:
- to keep students connected to learning experiences during a prolonged school closure.
- to provide some normalcy for students through engagement in learning activities and relationships with their teachers.
During this time students and teachers will not be expected to follow their normal schedule or be online for a full day of learning. Instead, the vast majority of the work will involve students learning at their own pace and the flexibility to complete assignments at a time that works best for their families.
Webster Groves will begin online learning on Friday, March 27th. Teachers will use Monday, March 23rd through Wednesday, March 25th for professional development and preparation on implementing online learning. On Thursday, March 26th, teachers will practice sending out lessons, and families will practice logging into Google Classroom. Lessons will start being sent out to all students on Friday, March 27th. Given that most elementary teachers and students do not have experience with Google Classroom, we will start by rolling out a single lesson a day, for several days, for our elementary students, before providing a fuller day of instruction. Following a regional meeting of curricular leaders and ongoing internal discussion, the district will communicate its plan regarding student grades/credits.
Tips for Managing Online Learning at Home
In an online learning environment, students will need to practice a different set of skills to complete work and in order to not take steps backwards during a prolonged period away from school. Here are some tips that will help families and students to manage and be successful in a digital learning environment.
- Manage your time - Be conscious and realistic of the time that it will take to complete tasks assigned by our teachers. If possible, set aside consistent time each day to complete your school work and be diligent during that time.
- Understand the amount of time to spend on online learning - The amount of time spent learning online is not equal to the time provided for face to face instruction. Students will not be online for 6+ hours a day.
- Stay connected with your teachers - Your teachers will be posting work and providing assignments on a daily basis and feedback as often as possible. Stay connected by logging into Google Classroom and checking your email daily. We will also be utilizing Zoom conferencing to enable our teachers to interact with your children on a regular basis. All communications will now be digital.
- Take regular breaks - Build in breaks to the time that you have set aside for your school work. It's important to stay active and keep to a regular sleep schedule during this time.
- Limit distractions - During the time you have set aside, it may be necessary to create a workspace free from distractions. We all work differently, but if it seems tasks are taking a long time, implementing strategies such as finding a quiet place to complete your work and turning off social media notifications can go a long way toward helping with focus.
- Find time to be social - online learning can be isolating and it's important to find and create opportunities to be social, even though it will be digital.
- Set goals - One of the most effective strategies for online learning is to set and keep track of goals. Your teachers will create ways to help you keep track of your assignments. Use these as a way to track your time and set goals for completion.
Online Learning Through Google Classroom
During this emergency closure, Google Classroom will serve as our online learning platform for Webster Groves classes.
- Using Google Classroom as our single point of access provides consistency for our families so you have one place to go for all of your child(ren)’s classes.
- All Webster Groves teachers and students have Google accounts and upon logging in students will navigate to Google Classroom. Students will be able to access any materials and resources needed to complete work.
- Parents can also access Google Classroom to see what work their child has been assigned by logging in with the student. Teachers have been asked to add parents to all of their Google Classrooms.
Technology Support for Families and Students
For technical support, parents and students can Submit a help desk ticket https://wgsd.on.spiceworks.com/portal . You can also email your technology support requests to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- We recognize that not all students have a reliable internet or device. We are working hard to make sure all student technology needs are met, and will be reaching out to the families who have indicated they need support with the internet and/or a computing device.
Resources for Families and Students
Parents Guide to Google Classroom
- The purpose of Google Classroom is to facilitate paperless communication between teachers and students and streamline educational workflow. Google Classroom allows teachers to create classes, post assignments, organize folders, and view work in real-time.
- Zoom is a video conferencing platform we will be using to virtually meet and record lessons for our students. Students will not have individual Zoom accounts, but will be given a link to virtually meet or to watch a recording. This is a way that we can continue to connect with our students on a more personal level and engage in more face-to-face discussions and lessons.
- Clever is a single sign-on product that uses one username for the various different products we use. The student’s Clever Login is their Google email and their Google password. To log into Clever:
Go to your portal: https://clever.com/in/wgsd
Log in with your Clever username and password:
Username: Google username
Password: Google password
Username: Google username
Password: Google password
Webster Groves Google Login for Students
- All Webster Groves K-12 students have a Google Username and Password. To access your child's Google Username please login to the Parent Portal, https://sis.webster.k12.mo.us/wg360x3/login and then click on Student Details. There you will find your child's email address. Our Google district domain is @wgcloud.org. Student Google Passwords are the student’s lunch pins with wgsd added on to the end (e.g. 1111wgsd). To locate your child’s lunch pin, within the Parent Portal, click on Meal Service and Meal Pin will be on the right hand side. By clicking on the “eye” icon, the Meal Pin number will become available. Remember that you will need to add wgsd to the end of the meal pin when logging into Google.
Walter Ambrose Family Center Students
- Teachers from the Walter Ambrose Family Center will utilize the GOLD platform, teacher blogs, and email to communicate with families.
Phone Numbers/Emails for Building Administrators, Counselors, Social Workers and Nurses
- Parents who need assistance from Building Administrator(s), Counselors, Social Workers and Nurses will be able to email or call them. Their phone messages will be forwarded to their email. You can find their contact information here: Contact Numbers
Phone Numbers of Teachers
- Teachers will be providing their direct line school phone numbers for parents to use.
- They have the ability to check their messages remotely.
- For technical support, parents and students can Submit a help desk ticket https://wgsd.on.spiceworks.com/portal . You can also email your technology support requests to email@example.com.
How will information about online learning be communicated?
The district will communicate in all the manners it normally does, including but not limited to: the Webster Groves website: www.webster.k12.mo.us, Email, Phone call, Text, Facebook: WebsterGrovesSD, and Twitter: @WebsterGrovesSD.
How will an online learning day look for my child?
Families will receive a notification through Google Classroom from their teachers that will provide instructions on classwork/projects/activities to be completed. Work completed during the online learning day should be handed in through Google Classroom. Elementary students will be assigned, at most, 15-30 minutes of work per subject area per day, with the main focus being ELA and math (although some social studies and science content will be provided).
Middle and high school students will be assigned approximately 30 minutes of work per subject area per day.
What if I am sick and unable to participate in online learning?
If you are unable to complete your work in the time assigned due to illness, contact your teacher(s) and we will work with students and families individually.
What if my child has an Individualized Education Plan and/or a 504plan?
Webster Groves School District assures that the instructional plan for online learning days for students with disabilities will follow each student’s individualized education program (IEP) and/or a 504 plan, to the greatest extent possible, according to the guidance from the U.S. Department of Education:
“If an LEA continues to provide educational opportunities to the general student population during a school closure, the school must ensure that students with disabilities also have equal access to the same opportunities, including the provision of FAPE. (34 CFR §§ 104.4, 104.33 (Section 504) and 28 CFR § 35.130 (Title II of the ADA)). SEAs, LEAs, and schools must ensure that, to the greatest extent possible, each student with a disability can be provided the special education and related services identified in the student’s IEP developed under IDEA, or a plan developed under Section 504. (34 CFR §§ 300.101 and 300.201 (IDEA), and 34 CFR § 104.33 (Section 504))”
Parents should contact their child’s case manager or SSD area coordinator if you have additional questions. If you have specific questions regarding your child's 504 plan please contact your child's counselor or social worker.
Is the expectation that my child will be on their device all day to complete work?
No. While there might be classwork to be completed on a device, portions of the day would be intended to have learners complete activities that are NOT on devices.
How will teachers and other certified personnel be available to communicate with students?
Teachers will be available to communicate with students through a variety of means. Google Classroom, Zoom video-conferencing, and email will all be used.
If electronic methods will be used, how will students without the internet or a computing device complete their work?
We are working directly with individual families who have indicated that they need internet and/or computing devices.
For online learning days, the Webster Groves District will use the following types of materials:
During this emergency closure, Webster Groves teachers will be using Google Classroom, Zoom video-conferencing, and email, as well as a variety of activities and resources that will be embedded into Google Classroom. Please see above for additional information.