A Quality Education Should Go the Distance, No Matter Where Students Are
Our Blended Learning Model
At Ashley Hall, we are committed to classrooms that support student mastery of content, independence, and confidence in learning. Our Blended Learning Model is carefully scaffolded to provide individualized instruction and encourage student agency. Students encounter academic concepts through small group direct instruction, independent work, collaborative assignments, and online tools.
While Blended Learning is primarily intended for on-campus instruction, it is well-suited to adapt to distance learning when the situation requires that we offer remote classrooms. We understand that each family’s situation is different and that children learn best in stable and predictable environments. For that reason, we seek to create distance and on-campus learning cohorts that are designed for effective learning and active faculty support.
Our Distance Learning Plan
Our core values of individualized learning, student-driven inquiry, and a rich community are the foundation of all we do, including distance learning. We recognize that relationships and connections are a strong component of the success of an Ashley Hall education. Our distance learning plan is designed to foster a supportive community of learning while we eagerly await a safe return to on-campus instruction.
From synchronous small group instruction and one-on-one meetings to asynchronous lessons that fit within our families’ schedules, our School knows the importance of helping each student discover what works best. Our distance learning opportunities are specially calibrated to blend a developmentally appropriate amount of on-screen time with activities that foster independence, movement, and success through multiple modes of learning. We partner with families for an education experience based on a traditional foundation enhanced by modern learning.
“Celebrating the many talents and endeavors of our community is not dependent upon a specific location or time frame but rather our ability to join together through the spirit of community.”
—Head of School Jill Muti
Students learn in different ways and especially need support for their learning styles during distance learning. We offer a number of options to help students meaningfully engage with the curriculum, their teachers, and each other.
Synchronous Meetings: From morning meeting and advisory to classes and labs, students interact with their classmates and teachers in real time.
Small Groups: Teachers offer special sessions within classes to review concepts, cement new material, and extend the learning process.
One-on-One Interactions: To best meet students’ needs, teachers offer a number of ways for students to connect with them individually, including video and telephone calls, set office hours, and weekly check-ins.
Support Services: The full range of Ashley Hall’s whole-student approach to education—including attention to social and emotional health and well being—are available to students via distance learning. Access to services such as our Lower School and Upper School counselors, wellness classes, the Math Lab, the College Counseling Office, and much more is seamless regardless of location.
As a school of independent and self-directed learners, Ashley Hall supports students in their critical thinking explorations.
Asynchronous Lessons: Prioritizing critical thinking, weekly lesson plans and objectives allow students to self-pace and adopt a schedule that best fits their learning needs, all with the support of teachers at their fingertips.
Technology Done Right: Our teachers choose the best online tools to enhance learning and encourage student voice, choice, self-direction, and independence.
Creating Lifelong Learners: Our curriculum gives students a foundation to build upon and goes beyond subject mastery. When students drive their own learning, the experience stays with them for life.
Culture of Community
At Ashley Hall, community is at the heart of all we do. Maintaining strong bonds between students and their peers as well as teachers is critical during distance learning—that’s why we place a premium on communication, transparency, and feedback.
Staying in Close Contact: Communication is a two-way street, and in addition to receiving Head of School, Division Director, and teacher emails, families are always encouraged to reach out with any questions or concerns.
Valued Feedback: Our recent parent survey asked families to share their successes as well as challenges with distance learning, and we added new offerings in response. While maintaining our core values, we are always looking for the best ways possible to meet the needs of our students.
Nurturing Connections: Faculty maintain close weekly contact with Early Education Center families, and Lower School (K-6th grade) families are being called weekly by their division assistant as a gentle check in. Upper School (7th-12th grades) has created family care teams who are placing similar calls to their families. Families are encouraged to reach out with any needs they have.
Virtual Community Building: From an “Ashley Hall Good News” channel to Family Game Night, we create opportunities to connect beyond the distance learning classroom. We want our families to feel fully embraced and supported by our community!