East Devon school’s virtual playground boosts pupils’ mental health in lockdown

An East Devon Primary School created a virtual playground during lockdown in a bid to boost pupil mental health.

Broadclyst Community Primary School (BCPS) used digital technology to set up an after-lessons online socialise space, saying the wellbeing of its youngsters was ‘high on the agenda’.

The school created the online space to enable children to mix with chat with their friends, classmates and support staff after lessons ended.

Beth Schoter, a teacher at Broadclyst Community Primary School, was recently asked to speak at Discovery Education’s Learning for Now — an online conference to help educators use technology and digital media as support in the classroom during the coronavirus.

The teacher told colleagues about the school’s approach to ‘blended learning’ – using a mix of digital technology and live lessons in a bid to keep pupils motivated while studying at home.

The Year 2 teacher said BCPS had been ‘fortunate’ it had set up its virtual school early in the pandemic.

She said: “Keeping lessons engaging and trying to mirror the quality we deliver in schools is really important to us.”

She added: “The world of education technology is growing rapidly and as teachers, we have a responsibility to keep up.”

East Devon

Broadclyst Community Primary School.
Image: Google.

The online teaching conference was told how primary pupils at Broadclyst  ‘whoop and cheer’ when logging on to the dedicated online curriculum support site of videos, quizzes and activities.

Andrew Hammond, senior director of Learning at Discovery Education, said: “It was fascinating to hear how Broadclyst Community Primary School is adapting to the challenges of remote schooling and using digital technology to keep pupils motivated and engaged during this difficult time.”

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