St. Teresa’s Academy’s Successful Shift to Virtual Learning
The talented faculty and staff of St. Teresa’s Academy were well prepared when the coronavirus pandemic quickly ended in-class instruction during the 2019-2020 school year. Students seamlessly shifted into the virtual learning environment that had been in place for inclement weather throughout the year.
Using the computers each student receives for her time at STA, students followed their same school schedules, meeting virtually with classes and using online resources to complete their studies.
The following demonstrates many of the creative inspirations that helped students, faculty, and staff to resiliently succeed during this challenging period of time.
Sharing Prayers and Inspirational Messages
As always, the foundation of the Catholic faith has been instrumental in lifting up the STA community through challenging times. Prayers and uplifting messages were shared through daily messages, email, social media, and virtual meetings to provide strength and comfort.
Introducing the Virtual Angels Program
The Virtual Angels Program offered outreach to students, faculty, and staff to check on their well-being and ensure students continued to feel connected to STA. Through email, video meetings, and phone calls, STA volunteers reached out to keep the community together.
Creatively Designing Assignments
STA faculty banded together to share their creativity and ingenuity in furthering learning through using materials students could easily find at home.
Prime examples included:
- Students in Anatomy & Physiology II classes thought outside of the box by building models of the body systems using charger cables, ping pong paddles, headbands, and more to create the structure of the respiratory system.
- While studying periodic motion, students in Physics classes gathered supplies from home to create remarkable pieces of pendulum art. Take a look below at the artistic outcomes of their creations!
- In an AP Physics project, students demonstrated their understanding of the transfer of energy from one form to another by building a marble run out of material they found at home. Click here to view their captivating results: https://flipgrid.com/231dc4da
- Freshman Biology students participated in an at-home science lab to learn about DNA by extracting DNA from fruit and their own cheeks. Click here to view a snapshot of their experiment results.
- An English class decided to read Our Town together. Kate Absher, English teacher, wrote, "The girls knew it was going to be emotional so they asked if we could experience it together instead of reading it alone. Exactly what Thornton Wilder would have wanted!"
Offering Academic Support Services
For students needing additional academic help, time was built into the end of the school year with resources available, including one-on-one learning time, to help ensure students received the assistance they needed to help achieve their educational objectives.
Jumping into Workout Challenges
Coach Kogge, physical education teacher, offered themed, online workout challenges each day. Workouts had different themes, like Meditation Monday with yoga, Throwback Thursday with old school workouts, and Fun Friday with dances!
Presenting the STA Fine Arts Showcase
Extraordinary works of art created by students were exhibited on Facebook in the annual STA Fine Arts Showcase. Each day, new works of art were featured (see below), including Senior Spotlights, highlighting work from the class of 2020. Click here to discover the students' music, dance, visual art pieces, and more.
Socializing during Virtual Lunches
Students got together virtually with their advisories and with classmates to enjoy lunch together. One senior stated, “It’s definitely not the same as lunch in the Commons, but it was nice to be able to be together outside of class!”
Chilling Out in the Relaxation Room
Those who needed time to reflect and relax could step into the virtual relaxation room to find helpful tools to keep them zen. Click the link below to give it a try:
Honoring the Class of 2020
The combined choirs of STA created a virtual choir to honor the graduating class of 2020 choir singers. Please click here to enjoy this performance of Susan Brumfield’s arrangement “No Time,” a traditional camp meeting song. Thanks to director of choirs, Steve Perry; pianist, Robert Pherigo; and audio/video engineer, Lucas Pherigo. You won’t want to miss this!