Schools prepare in advance as classes go online in Shanghai:

Ti Gong:

Students of Minhang Experimental Primary School take online classes at home.

Schools prepare in advance as classes go online in Shanghai:

Ti Gong:

Students of Minhang Experimental Primary School take online classes at home.

“My daughter started having online classes again due to the latest COVID-19 pandemic resurgence. Fortunately, my company also encourages us to work from home for the same reason. It is all for the better since I can now look over as she studies, “Luna Gao, mother of a 10-year-old girl, said on Monday.

The Shanghai Education Commission announced on Friday that all local elementary and secondary schools would move their teaching online due to the latest state requirements for coronavirus prevention and control.

It’s the second time that Shanghai has mandated a citywide online teaching campaign since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2020, local students took online classes for two to three months.

“The school acted very quickly and the classes were delivered very smoothly on Monday, thanks to earlier experiences in teaching, learning and homework management,” Gao said of her daughter’s school.

“The only problem is that children are less disciplined at home than at school. I heard the teachers had to remind students not to send unnecessary messages from time to time.”

Schools prepare in advance as classes go online in Shanghai:

Ti Gong:

A math teacher of Minhang Experimental Primary School teaches from home.

For local schools, preparations for going online started early.

Zhang Jun, acting principal of the Chuncheng Campus of Minhang Experimental Primary School, revealed that all the school teachers worked overtime during the weekend to make sure online schooling was smooth.

“Our school actually started teaching online from Friday due to concerns about the pandemic situation in nearby areas,” she said. “We have chosen a new platform for delivering the classes, so we trained our teachers and they practiced how to operate it on Friday.

“On the weekend, we had more training sessions and meetings about how to operate the system and how to improve class efficiency to get all the teachers and teaching materials ready.”

The school also did a survey among parents to ensure that all students could take online classes at home and worked out new class schedules for them.

Zhang said that the school used the city teaching resources of “Classrooms in the Air” which has been developed and upgraded in the past two years since the pandemic outbreak.

“After two days of running classes, we found that some teachers were not satisfied with the Internet speed. We have submitted applications to communications service providers to improve their Internet bandwidth to ensure students have a better class experience,” the principal stated.

Schools prepare in advance as classes go online in Shanghai:

Ti Gong:

An English teacher of Minhang Experimental Primary School teaches online.

In suburban Baoshan District, a family of three teachers has been busy teaching with computers.

Li Shuangquan is a math teacher of the senior high division of Gucun High School while his wife Zhang Lixin teaches math in the school’s junior high division. Their daughter is also a math teacher but teaches at another school.

Li said his school provided them with tablets to livestream the classes from home. On Monday, each of them occupied a room to teach their own students with doors closed to avoid disturbing each other.

In Huangpu District, math teacher Xia Zhengxiong of Xingye Middle School showed up at the classroom even though there were no students and the school allows teachers to teach from home.

She used a chalk to write on the blackboard with a camera capturing her moves as she shared it with students of two classes.

“My husband is also a teacher and our 3-year-old son is naughty,” she said. “So I decided to work from school, worried of being disturbed by them at home.”

In order to ensure classes are delivered smoothly, she went to school on Sunday to try her computer and other supporting facilities in advance.

Meanwhile, some schools have students whose parents have difficulty taking care of them at home.

Yangtai Experimental School in Baoshan is one of them. A total of 16 students of different ages took online classes on campus on Monday.

The school installed online teaching software in different classrooms, where the students were taken care of by intern teachers and volunteers, and also provided lunch.

Schools prepare in advance as classes go online in Shanghai:

Ti Gong:

Some students took online classes at Yangtai Experimental School in suburban Baoshan District on Monday.

To make home schooling more interesting, some schools arranged extra classes for students.

Luwan No. 1 Central Primary School in Huangpu arranged a class featuring stories about fighting the virus and another combining several subjects such as Chinese, math, art and sports to educate students about the pandemic. For example, the first lesson of the interdisciplinary class delivered on Monday was how to do exercise at home to stay healthy.

At Wuning Road Experimental Primary School in suburban Jiading District, a 15-minute class has been scheduled from Monday to Friday, involving various activities ranging from creative art and games to handicraft and dance.

Amid the online flurry, medical experts are reminding parents to pay attention to their children’s eye health as they spend more time looking at digital screens.

Yang Yong, director of optometry and pediatric ophthalmology department of Shanghai Ai’er Eye Hospital, said good habits and proper time for eye use are important for eye health.

“Improper habits and environments are key causes of myopia,” he said. “When studying online at home, students should maintain correct writing and reading gestures to keep a distance from books. Meanwhile, they should use their eyes for no longer than 30 minutes each time and look far into the distance during breaks to rest and relax the eyes. “

Yang said projectors and TV sets with large screens are a better choice than computers and smartphones as students can watch from afar, but the distance should not be farther than four times the length of the screen’s diagonal line.

“Meanwhile, parents had better ensure their children have at least eight hours of sleep and are exposed to sunshine for at least two hours each day, which are also helpful in maintaining eye health,” he suggested.

Yang advised parents to prepare sufficient vegetables and fruits as well as other food rich in vitamins, Omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, zeaxanthin, and mineral zinc to protect children’s eyesight. Chocolate and candies should be controlled.

“And finally, children should wash their hands frequently, especially during the pandemic, and they’d better not rub their eyes with their hands,” the doctor stated.

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