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“When considering “E-Learning”,  the 'e' should mean much more than electronic. If we are going to call it e-learning, shouldn't it be effective, efficient, and engaging?”

March Flashback

FABLe is live and we’re in schools! 
Before the lock-down, we completed assessments at Udayachal Primary School. Now, we’re connecting with schools virtually.
If interested, please reach out to us at: fable@gatewayschoolmumbai.org
A Note From The Co-Principals:
Gateway has faced many challenges over the years, come out on top and changed for the better. Our vision and mission have been to transform the landscape of special education, so we know better than anyone what it means to have to carve our own path. But we felt backed up against the wall when the notice came to close school overnight, with no certainty of when we could reopen.
How do we conduct virtual learning with our students?
How could we possibly optimise learning for students who thrive on movement, need routine and structure, and benefit from the close interactions and multi-disciplinary inputs of team members? We were stumped.
On Thursday, when we broke the news that we might have to close, there was silence.
Virtual occupational therapy? You could have been asking us to fly to the moon.
But then something changed! Gateway mobilised as it has done it the past, and hopefully will continue to do as new challenges come our way. Ideas came pouring through and you could feel the excitement when you walked into a room. By Friday, all homerooms had individualised plans for students, ready to kickstart the following week.
We are so grateful to our community → students, parents, team members, founders, well-wishers. Thank you for continuing to believe in us, supporting us. None of this would be possible without you.
Below is a quick peek into all of the fantastic stuff that has been going on these past two weeks!

Student Spotlight
Building Capacity in Students

Lower School
During individual check-ins, the Super Troupers shared that they are missing their friends. This led their homeroom teachers to organize a Zoom call for a Super Trouper Reunion! All the teachers and students came together to share some virtual love and had a blast!
Teachers also used Powtoon (a video making tool with teacher voice over feature) to make content easy to understand and more engaging.
Middle School
Ground Breakers teachers held Whatsapp video calls with students to check-in and catch up with each other during this time apart. Needless to say, the students and teachers were both super excited for these daily video calls!
Endless Explorers teachers used the screen sharing feature on Zoom to discuss notes virtually and clear students’ doubts
Rainbow Riders homeroom held theme days which included “funky hairstyle” and “cool socks” days to bring a sense of togetherness while physically apart. They also had Zoom calls with all students and teachers who teach the homeroom, and sang a “washing hands” song together!

High School

Goal Diggers have been following a schedule similar to a school schedule; packed full of academic classes, check-ins, lunch breaks and homework too! A mix of synchronous and asynchronous classes have kept the students engaged at home.  It has indeed been a valuable experience for the teachers and students to learn virtually.

The NIOS 2nd preliminary examinations for The Whyers were hosted online. Once the teachers had corrected the work, they scheduled one on one calls with students and went over the paper via screen sharing on Zoom. In these calls, they reflected on which questions they could work on next and how to review and practice them at home.
The Teen Innovators have stayed true to their homeroom name, and have been using their time at home to practice their skills in the kitchen and create yummy food!
They made chilly cheese omelettes on one day, and pancakes for breakfast on another. The best part? They individualized a typical pancake recipe to make almond-flour pancakes and banana pancakes, as per their dietary restrictions!
Infinite Learners played Quizizz and Kahoots live, and enjoyed those competitive sessions! They were also joined by their homeroom support staff on Zoom in one of their daily homeroom Zoom calls! Inclusion all the way!
Students of Flock Together, from the Senior High School Adaptive Program (HSAP Sr.) have stayed engaged through virtual meetings, small and large group chats on Google Classroom, WhatsappZoom classes, check-inshome-based assignments and creating and sharing videos with peers.
Homeroom teacher, Sejal Shah says "It is amazing to see how far my students have come; most are now able to log into Zoom, google classroom, study ladder and different online platforms on the laptop themselves. This is a huge milestone!"

Digital Professional Development
Virtually Building Capacity in the Team

This period of virtual schooling has been a tremendous learning experience for the entire team. In this section, our departments share discipline-specific tools and structures they've adopted to support our students and help them learn online, as well as the professional development initiatives they've engaged in.
ICT Coordinator Riddhi Gogri and Speech Therapist, Alisha Nagree explored the concept of Tele-Practice (online therapy), by attending an online interactive conference with Amplio Speech, a company providing online speech therapy, in the USA.
Math
The team leveraged existing tools that are typically used in Math classes like Zearn, Studyladder, www.code.org, Khan academy, etc in addition to using school-wide structures like Zoom and Google classroom. They also periodically checked in with each other to see how the team was doing, and with students, to support them with learning.
#sociallydistancedvirtuallyclose
Science and Humanities
The team used a tool, Edpuzzle to upload content-related videos with questions and even added voice notes with video to provide a teacher explanation of the topic.
They recorded or had live Zoom classes with students that involved interactive sessions and games using Mentimeter and Socrative, in addition to posting regular assignments on Google Classroom.
Language
For Lower School, the team created daily videos where teachers shared their plan for the day and held 1:1 classes through Zoom. They shared books from Storyweaver and worksheets on Google Classroom. They also assigned remedial work through Lalilo - which provides individualized teaching and practice in phonics and reading comprehension skills 

In Middle School, teachers created “How-To” videos to solve different worksheets made using Screen castify, so the students could watch teachers demonstrate the task. They also assigned reading comprehension work on Readworks - a website that has graded passages with audio support. Language remedials were conducted through Studyladder - a program similar to Lalilo.

Social- Emotional Learning
The SE Team did check-ins with students over Zoom to see how they were doing and support them
For the team, they shared resources such as videos on "Connecting with Compassion", and ideas on how to shift your mindset during a pandemic. They also made themselves available to chat with the staff.
They used this time to start planning for next year and worked on designing a workshop for Summer PD that will help the team with behaviour support.
Speech Therapy

The speech therapists held functional communication classes over group Whatsapp video calls with High School students and conducted IGCSE classes over Zoom and Google classroom
They shared resources and a home program for Middle School students which required students to print and fill worksheets or make video recordings of themselves and upload them to show their learning. 
For our little ones in Lower School, the team designed a home program which the students and parents could engage in during their free time, as an interactive family activity.

Sensory-Motor Therapy

The SM team assigned activities that align with the "Classroom skills" unit being done at school. They also assigned activities that allow for some "Sensory Integration" in the home environment. The main idea of this was for skills to be practiced and students to engage in creative projects without screen time.
As a team, they researched concepts and read books and articles to build upon knowledge in preparation for the next academic year, and discussed these over a Zoom call.

Gym
In order to keep ourselves fit and healthy during this sedentary time, daily fitness Youtube videos of 15-20 minutes were shared with students based on homeroom levels. Gym teachers then encouraged students to exercise along with these videos! Who says you can't stay fit while at home?
Arts
A Visual Art journal task was assigned to students in Middle School to keep the kids creatively engaged. Some students were even assigned origami tasks with full video tutorials. 

Recordings of songs being spoken and sung line by line were shared with students so that they could keep practicing singing at home. A few homerooms were also given the task of writing a “Music and Emotions” journal where they could document their feelings during this lock-down period and the kind of music they gravitated towards in such a time. 

A live Drama class on Zoom got their creative juices flowing as students picked one object from their room. They first described the ordinary use of that object and then, looking at the shape and size of the object, they thought of what else it could be and a different use for it!

ICT
The students in Rainbow Riders pursued various passions within ICT classes, out of which one of our student leveraged StarMaker App to showcase his singing skill. He now has a YouTube Channel and has sung "Heal the World", to cheer us up in this trying time. 
 
Here’s the link to his song. Please like and subscribe to his page! 

Outreach and Community Engagements
Building Capacity in the Community

Prior to the lock-down, Teachers from the Integrated Approach to Technology in Education (ITE) fellowship at Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) were to visit the school for an orientation and to understand how we integrate technology in our classes, but due to the COVID-19 situation, we had to restrict visitors to the school.
Radhika Chandrasekaran conducted a virtual orientation and sharing session over Zoom and shared the background of the school and how we function. We showed them videos of classes and how our kids use tech for learning. One of our High School students, Vihaan Chitnis from the Teen Innovators came online as well and shared how he has been learning coding on code.org and presented his codes.
Teachers Rudri Joshi and Zara Parekh also shared about various tech tools they use in their classes. We also walked them through the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) framework and the thinking process of how we decide on what technology to use and when.
The teachers shared that they found the session very useful and would like to collaborate with GSoM in the future to have our students interact with each other through the use of these tech tools.
Before the nation-wide lock-down, Dr. Radhika Misquitta was invited to be a speaker at a National Conference on "Addressing Environmental Barriers and Universal Design" organised by the Department of Special Education at SNDT, in collaboration with the National Institute for Empowerment of Persons with Multiple Disabilities (NIEPMD). At this conference, she conducted a session on "Designing a UDL Classroom".

Gateway Community Update

Monthly Social-Emotional Article

Each month, the SE team sends an article to the Gateway team to share best practices and build competency. This month they've shared an article on different ways anxiety can manifest. 

8 Ways A Child's Anxiety Shows Up As Something Else

Monthly Nutrition Article

Kelly Dorfman is one of the world’s foremost experts on using nutrition therapeutically to improve brain function, energy and mood.  She works collaboratively with other medical professionals to help people develop creative strategies to address complex ailments and symptoms.
This month, we're sharing her article on Nutrition and COVID-19

3 Odd Things about COVID-19

Looking Forward To

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The Gateway School of Mumbai · Sion Trombay Road · Next to Deonar Bus Depot · Diagonally Opp TISS · Govandi East · Mumbai 400088 · India 






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