Distance Learning at SSCM

Distance Learning at SSCM
Distance Learning at SSCM

At Saints Cyril and Methodius School in Deer Park, teachers are bringing down the walls of the classroom through distance learning. Fifth Graders went on a Lake Michigan journey through history featuring “The Christmas Tree Ship.” Teacher, Mrs. Congro, connected them with instructors at the Milwaukee Public Museum, where students were guided through a tour, including a modern-day troubadour who entertained them by passing on culture and history through song in this dynamic digital setting. Storytelling is an art that comes in many different forms and anyone can participate. The students realized that they are all storytellers.

The youngsters also learned that the United States Coast Guard, and indeed, the entire maritime community of Chicago, continues the work of the Christmas Tree Ship today. They provide Christmas trees, decorations, gifts and a Christmas dinner for the less fortunate of the area. The students discussed how this powerful message was a wonderful example of the true reason for the season during Christmastime.

Mrs. Hannigan’s Third Graders participated in a “Story Hour” video conference, also provided by the Milwaukee Public Museum. Students learned that storytelling started long before there was a written language and books as we have today. Stories pass on the culture and history of people. This interactive activity culminated with the children making a storytelling Christmas ornament. The students all enjoyed the activities and learned a great deal about the fine art of storytelling.

Kindergarteners and First Graders enjoyed a virtual visit with Santa, as he took time from his busy December schedule at the North Pole to speak with these early learners. Santa taught the students about the geography of the seven continents and spoke about his plans for Christmas Eve. The students impressed their teachers, Mrs. McGerald and Mrs. Shirreffs, by being able to identifying almost all of the fifty indigenous animals Santa discussed. The Mariners’ Museum was the source of our journey “Around the World with Santa”, which ended with Santa reading A Pirate’s Night Before Christmas. As part of the program, these early learners completed a passport for Santa, to help them remember all of his stops.

Placing the highest value on authentic student experiences, teachers at SSCM show students in a very real way, the importance of learning more about the global world, in which we live. By going outside the community, SSCM teachers are exposing the students to real experiences that help educate the whole person. More than simple lectures, these video conferences are events provided by well-trained educators engaging kids’ hearts, inspiring their hands and illuminating their minds.
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