Even in the new age of social distancing, Neshaminy staff and students have found multiple ways to stay connected to learn, enjoy each others company and share creativity online. Online webinars and meetings, once the mainstay of start-up business and corporate teams, have become the “go-to” way for teams of administrators, teachers and support staff to stay connected. Using a variety of tools, including Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and even the District educational apps such as Flipgrid, individuals are able to connect with video, screen sharing and text chat. Teachers are able to reach out to students on the District Chromebooks to review projects, deliver video lessons, or just say hello. Many have already loaded videos covering everything from reading and science challenges to juggling and yoga lessons to share with their students. Neshaminy administrators are holding team meetings to plan everything from online curriculum to employee support.
Neshaminy students are already well-equipped to share projects on their Chromebooks and other devices using such applications as IXL, WeVideo, FlipGrid, Nearpod and Clever and Canvas.
But just like the real world, it’s not all work. Video and social media are important tools that are being used to maintain a sense of community and keeps students engaged throughout the District. Several schools have remotely produced staff greeting videos, offering messages of hope, inspiration or just plain fun from teachers and administrators to their home-bound students. Over 100 Walter Miller students captured short videos for a music compilation which were edited together and shared with their schoolmates.
Herbert Hoover Principal Dr. David Glennon has been posting a number of entertaining videos, including daily updates of his schedule, book reading, exercises, singing, and even a home fire drill on Hoover’s Facebook page and Twitter feed. Several art contests have appeared on social media pages around the District, including one on the District’s main Facebook page.
Some of these efforts are brand new, while some are just extensions of projects started during the school year. As the closure extends beyond its second week we expect to see many more Neshaminy connections built in the cloud.