Summer Session teachers pave the way for high quality virtual instruction

Summer Session teachers pave the way for high quality virtual instruction
Posted on 08/09/2020
Middle school students learns in Mehlville Summer SessionIn June and July, Mehlville School District’s Summer Session teachers had the opportunity to explore how they could make virtual instruction more engaging for students. These teachers were able to use real-time feedback from students to find ways to improve their distance teaching strategies. As we start on-campus instruction in Plan C: Connected, these teachers are sharing their lessons learned with their colleagues.

“In the spring, we were more focused on the fact that the pandemic was traumatic for the kids, and virtual learning was new for everybody,” said Jefferson Stephens, a sixth-grade teacher in Bernard Middle School’s Patriot Academy. “For Summer Session, we had a game plan and an understanding and were able to better prepare for the situation.”

To provide teachers with tools to be successful in their virtual classrooms, 
Mehlville School District has invested in distance learning technology and has provided professional development centered on teaching virtually.

“I’m trying to run it just as I would if I was standing there in front of them,” said Sabrina Huston, a computer science teacher at Bernard Middle School. “We talked with the kids about what they missed about being in a real classroom and figuring out how we could make this virtual course feel like that.” 

In most virtual Summer Session classes, students would join a Google Meet with their teachers and classmates at the start of their class session, participate in a mini-lesson and then leave the Google Meet to complete assignments. At the end of each session, students would return to their Meet to discuss and share their work. 

Mehlville School District parent Jenny Bess had two children attend Summer Session. She said her kids felt supported by their teacher and were able to complete their work independently and had the resources they needed to assist in their learning.

“Everything they needed was right there in the Google Meet and the Google Classroom,” Bess said. “The teacher was always available for them to log back on to that Google Meet and ask a question.” 

With the technology and tools in place, Summer Session teachers believe they will be able to help students learn successfully in a virtual setting until they are able to return to classrooms.

Summer Session students have enjoyed connecting with each other in their virtual classrooms, said Lisa Meyer, a fifth-grade teacher at Rogers Elementary School. “Of course we want to be in the classroom. This isn’t ideal, but I am 100% sure virtual teaching can work well.” 

Learn about our new virtual school Mehlville@Home

Watch the video to hear more teachers and parents talk about their experience in virtual Summer Session. 
The Mehlville School District strictly prohibits discrimination and harassment against employees, students or others on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, or sex including pregnancy, sexual orientation, and gender identity and other characteristics protected by law. The following individuals have been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: contact Adam Smith at 314-467-5006 or [email protected].