Information related to learning when your child needs to be out for an extended time such as a family emergency, trip, or prolonged illness.
It is understood that life happens and sometimes our students and families will need to be away from school. Please do not ask if your child will miss “anything important.” We have a work hard/play hard ethos here at PES. Important learning happens every day and our goal is to have our students be regular attendees (90%+) over the course of the school year.
Will they get a bad grade from missed assignments?
Unlike secondary schools which are heavily points = grade driven, elementary schools practice skills in a variety of ways such as small groups, centers, and whole-group direct instruction. Our grades and reports focus on knowledge and skills related to grade-level standards. Like athletes running or shooting free throws, we consistently spiral back to core skills in an elementary school with foundational reading, writing, and numeracy skills. In our intermediate grades, we continue to build upon these primary skills with increasing focus on core knowledge preparing students to apply in secondary education and beyond.
What should we do for learning while away from school?
Three good ideas include reading (independent or together), math facts (make it a game), and journal writing (reflect travels) as great ways to keep skills sharp. If your child is ill, the focus should be on getting better and returning to class. When your child is traveling, look for teachable moments that provide the opportunity to gain broader perspectives from the people and places they are experiencing. Playing board games and hands-on activities such as cooking always provide tremendous opportunities to enrich learning.
Should I ask for worksheets?
For some assignments this can work, however many times this can be tricky. While we use graphic organizers and practice pages as part of our core curriculum in areas such as math, language arts, social studies, and science, these activities typically go along with other instruction, supporting hands-on resources, and can sometimes be confusing in isolation without the classroom instruction. When in doubt, default to the tried true core practice skills with reading, math facts, and journaling.
What about special projects?
For special projects and bigger assignments, we’ll do our best to help your child be meaningfully included upon return as we recognize the importance of these memorable experiences. We may modify, adjust, and ask for help at home if possible.
-Eric Beasley, PES Principal