June 25, 2020
Preparing for September: Blended Learning, Safety Protocols in the Greenhouse Classroom, Supporting Farmer Scientists and the Community
Our NYC teachers did incredible work to move students to remote learning following the closure of schools in March. To help teachers continue the science and sustainability education taking place in their hydroponic classrooms, NY Sun Works updated the online Learning Center to help teachers adjust to the new reality. While we cannot yet predict what September will look like, NY Sun Works will continue to support our teachers and is already preparing for a range of possibilities.
Distance Learning Support and Resources
Thinking ahead to September, NY Sun Works will be updating and adding to our current remote learning resources. Additional lessons adapted for google class for K-8 and new offerings for high school will help support a highly possible blended learning scenario. Lessons will be available in google slides and will include resources such as NYSW reports (which will also be available in Spanish), recorded videos, as well as individual and small group work options. We will be expanding the NYSW Let’s Investigate video series which brings some of our hands-on science lessons home and features members of the Greenhouse Support Team. These videos will also be embedded into lessons. Finally, NYSW is in the process of developing a Hydroponics at Home student kit that will include hydroponic essentials such seeds and growing substrates. These new kits will allow students to engage in hands-on learning at home.
We’d love to hear from you! To improve our offerings for next school year, please complete this survey. Parents, teachers, and principals are all encouraged to share their feedback.
Health and Safety Protocols the Greenhouse Classroom
The health and safety of our teachers and students in the Greenhouse Classrooms is a top priority. We are actively developing Greenhouse Classroom protocols that will include all available health and safety precautions. As a start, all of our greenhouse classrooms already have sinks allowing students to wash their hands upon entering the hydroponics lab, while working in the space, and before leaving. We will be creating signage detailing proper hand washing protocols and reminding teachers and students to wash hands when entering the greenhouse classroom, throughout the time there, and before they leave. NY Sun Works will be adding additional sets of tools to classrooms so students can have individual tools and all tools will be thoroughly cleaned for next day use.
Supporting Farmer Scientists and the Community
The importance and relevance of teaching science science and sustainability is now more important than ever. In addition to the hands-on science learning that takes place in the Greenhouse Classrooms, the hydroponic labs also create an environment where students can build social-emotional skills like communication, collaboration, and empathy. We believe that the greenhouse classrooms can help fill the social-emotional needs of our students when coming back to school after a tremendously disruptive time. We are also planning for the The Harvest Program to be in place so that all food grown in the classroom will be available for pick-up at the schools. All food harvesting will follow all health and safety guidelines.