Jackson Hicks, seven, completes assigned school work at home during the COVID-19 pandemic. Jackson is a Grade 2 student at École Our Lady of the Rosary School. Photo Submitted.

Sylvan Lake mom says transition to at-home learning going well

Melissa Hicks’ sons, Jackson and Parker, are students at École Our Lady of the Rosary School

A Sylvan Lake mom says navigating the through the first week of at-home schooling via online learning is going well.

Melissa Hicks’ two boys, Jackson and Parker Hicks are adjusting well, but are missing their friends and teachers.

Both boys attend École Our Lady of the Rosary School with seven-year-old Jackson in Grade 2 and younger brother, Parker, in pre-kindergarten.

“It’s actually been going really well and I think a lot of that has to do with the amazing support we’ve been getting from the teachers and staff,” said Hicks.

Jackson has been working on math and language arts, while five-year-old Parker has been assigned games and artsy activities.

LEARN MORE: Catholic school students in Sylvan Lake to resume classes online next week

Hicks added the teachers have also provided a lot of online resources as well.

The school is using a remote learning tool where teachers can send the assignments to students and parents. The students then do the assignments online with the parents’ support.

She said her kids will do about two hours of school work a day, five days a week.

The classes are done however it can fit into your family’s schedule, which for them is in the mornings, followed by an afternoon break where they will take a walk or do activities like colouring.

Hicks added the teachers don’t put too much pressure on parents with deadlines and don’t want to overwhelm the students with the workload.

“I think they’re enjoying it because we get to spend lots of time together as a family and I’ve been keeping them busy at home,” said Hicks of the boys, who usually have a full schedule of extracurricular activities.

Additionally, she said, the boys are enjoying seeing their teachers when they correspond with videos.

“The kids get really excited to see their teacher and the teachers are always saying how much they miss them,” Hicks said. “My oldest boy, his language arts teacher, he always puts together like some fun activities for them and it gets us involved as a family too.”

Week one of at-home schooling has gone well and Hicks says she has had no issues during this new experience thus far.

She says the teachers have provided step-by-step how to videos and she has been using her friends of other Our Lady of the Rosary students have been leaning on each other outside of teacher office hours.

If the kids were to finish the school year in this format, Hicks believes it won’t hinder their level of education.

“They’re getting them to do the important things, so I think once they get to the next grade they won’t be struggling or falling behind or anything like that,” explained Hicks.

As the Hicks’ fall into their new routine they continue to miss their friends and family, but she is using video calls to help the kids keep in touch with their friends and keeping them as busy as possible.

“We have a lot more time to just kind of bond without that hectic schedule in the way,” commented Hicks, “it hasn’t been bad at all.”

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Parker Hicks, five, grins as he shows off a drawing he did during at-home schooling. Parker is a pre-kindergarten student at École Our Lady of the Rosary School. Photo Submitted.

Jackson (left) and Parker Hicks work opposite each other at the table during at-home school hour. Photo by Kaylyn Whibbs

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