Virtual School Briefing, Wed. Jan 29

Although the virtual school plan was developed by a team of faculty and administrators three years ago, the current situation is the first time we’ve activated it. We anticipate bumps along the way since it’s an untested system, and we know that with your feedback we can make it better. That’s why, in the interests of agility and transparency, I’ll be publishing regular virtual school briefings based on questions and feedback from the community. These briefings will be used to make clarifications, share emerging best practices, and adjust course. Here’s what has come up since yesterday:

Wait, what day is it?

Tuesday is a Day 1. Make sure you’ve added the Day Rotation Calendar to your Outlook by following these instructions.

Get in the (right time) zone

If you’re logging in to Office 365 on the web, make sure your time zone is right. Go to Settings > General > Language and time and check if the time zone matches your physical location.

If this is wrong, your scheduled meetings with others won’t show up correctly.

Remember, regardless of where you are, work hours follow the school’s regular class times, in the China Standard Time zone.

Tools for online discussions

Jodi T and her CPT asked about tools to help students have asynchronous and live discussions.

Is there a way our kids can “meet” virtually? We were planning to do lit circles when we got back from break. The concept would lend itself pretty well to an online lesson world if we had a forum that the kids could log into and talk to each other.

The Tech Ambassadors and I will address this repeatedly over the coming days, but if you want to get ahead, three good choices are:

  1. Canvas’ “Discussions” feature for written forum discussions
  2. FlipGrid for asynchronous video discussion
  3. Microsoft Teams for live group discussions that can be recorded, too!