At SBS, classroom teachers have been challenged to bring excellence into the virtual classroom. Our teachers know that professional online teaching is so much more than the ability to teach in a video conference room or develop a Google doc.


What does Virtual Learning look like @SBS Kindergarten?

At any age level, adapting to the virtual learning environment presents lots of challenges, none more so than in early years education. Our little ones need the support of parents or caregivers at home to help them navigate the virtual learning classroom, and so keep their academic development on track. At SBS we believe in fostering strong bonds between home and school, and this belief has taken on greater significance during the COVID pandemic. This is why our Virtual Learning Program was developed with collaboration from our learning community, thus creating effective learning partnerships between teachers and parents, while also developing a program that is adaptable and flexible to different needs and lifestyles of our families.

Blended Approach

Our virtual learning program is a blended approach between live zoom sessions with teachers and pre-recorded mini lessons that can be viewed on demand. This approach provides the flexibility for our families to tailor a home learning plan that suits their lifestyles. Like the rest of us, children sometimes have their off days and are not in the mood to sit in front of the computer. Providing support in the form of pre-recorded mini lessons means nobody gets left behind.

Live Sessions

At SBS we are acutely aware of the medical advice regarding screen time for young children and have developed our program to ensure the health and wellbeing of children can be maintained at all times. Our live sessions are kept to 20minute periods and include sessions with the homeroom teachers and specialist subject teachers such as art, music, Mandarin, library, PE, and STEAM in K3. To ensure personalized attention for each child, our live sessions with the homeroom teachers are kept at 3 children maximum per session, while our special subjects are capped at 12-13. Our children have between 1 and 4 live sessions per day, depending on the timetable and the age level of children.
Our team of experienced educators are able to utilize a number of different learning apps and tools to engage with children and maintain their motivation to learn.

Pre-Recorded Mini Lesson and Morning Circle Time Videos

Providing access to on demand mini lessons ensures the right kind of flexibility for families at home. It helps provide the balance between structured lessons with the teacher and independent study at home. During independent study time, children get to explore concepts and put their new knowledge into practice. The morning circle time is an important part of the daily plan. It helps to create a positive start to the learning day as teachers have storytime, games, or some fun exercise songs to engage our little ones from the first moment, thus ensuring.

Daily Activity Plans

Our team provides a daily plan of learning activities that mirrors the schedule for on campus learning. These activities are specially designed to support play based learning at home, and to support the different learning styles of our little ones. In conjunction with the pre-recorded mini lessons, these activities provide children with the opportunity for independent learning as they explore concepts in hands-on ways that build upon their learning during live sessions. As experienced early years educators we know the value of free play in a child’s development and we encourage this by building in time and space for agentic learning.

Resource Packs

To support learning at home, and to support the different learning styles of our little ones, the Kindergarten team provides a weekly resource pack containing all the relevant materials children will need when doing independent study at home. These packs make it easy for our parent community as they don’t need to worry about what things they need to prepare. From Playdough to plant seeds, from flashcards to sensory bin materials, we have got everything covered.

How do we support children?

  • Through a blended virtual learning program that builds skills as well as academic abilities
  • Learning activities that support play based learning at home
  • By fostering strong learning partnership with families
  • Personalized and differentiated learning targets that mean all children are moving forward at their own pace
  • Continuous assessment in partnership with parents and caregivers

How do we support parents?

  • Through varied communication channels
    • With teachers through Seesaw
    • Weekly virtual afternoon tea meetings with the Principal of Kindergarten
    • Unit of Inquiry Newsletters
    • Monthly Princals Newsletters
  • Through parent education sessions
    • Curriculum presentation webinars by grade level
    • IB-PYP virtual workshops
  • Through virtual learning reflection surveys
  • Through a blended virtual learning program that is flexible to the lifestyle of families
  • Providing feedback on a child’s development
  • Weekly learning observation record to support next steps

What have we learned from this experience?

  • We have learned that through effective collaboration between home and school we can create a positive learning environment that supports the development of children at home
  • We have learned to be adaptable to new learning environments
  • We have learned that early years children, despite their age, can learn and grow effectively when supported with the right virtual learning program
  • We have learned to embrace ICT technology in learning and teaching

Primary School

Due to the current Covid-19 situation, our students have had to adapt to a new style of learning, the world of virtual or online learning. During this time our students have had to begin the new academic year online.

The importance of relationships between teachers and students

Relationships are important during online learning engagements and not only in the classroom. Our teachers provide challenging academic engagements and also support our learners both socially and emotionally. Our teachers strive to build a safe virtual classroom where all learners feel safe to take risks. Our teachers establish roles, create routines and share responsibilities in online classes. They get to know the students as individuals and attempt to ensure a degree of normality by continuing to celebrate our calendar events virtually.

Relationships with the community

At SBS we also strongly believe in maintaining our strong sense of community during this time through our virtual engagements. Our parent community is kept well informed through daily communication on our Seesaw app and emails. We understand that adapting to learning online can be challenging for our students and families as a result we have been hosting weekly sessions with our parent community where they have an opportunity to share any concerns or positive feedback from the week before. At SBS, we truly value feedback from our parent community to ensure the best possible learning experiences for all.

Our daily Schedules

Circle Time

Each day begins with an online adapted ‘Circle Time’. This enables our teachers to share the important information for the day. This session is used to discuss schedules and to share any questions or concerns from both teachers and students. These sessions enable our students to develop their self-management skills as they responsibly interact in the world of online learning.


Our learners are currently following online learning schedules. We have adapted our schedules for our younger learners with a combination of face-to-face classes and videos from our Special Subject teachers. This allows our learners to have quality interactions with teachers and to be flexible regarding the times they choose to complete the activities for some special subject classes.
Our upper Primary students follow their schedules and are provided with opportunities to engage with their peers and work collaboratively with others. They are given opportunities to meet in small group sessions where they receive regular feedback on their work from their teachers and peers.

Independent Learning Sessions

Our learners are also given sessions of independent learning where our children are given time off-screen to complete their tasks independently or collaboratively with others. In order to ensure that our learners feel fully supported, our teachers are available online during these sessions to answer any questions that may arise.

Split classes and small group situations

Our learners are grouped into smaller groups for Language, Numeracy, and UOI classes. This enables our teachers to differentiate the materials to meet the needs of each child.

Reflection Time

Each day ends with a daily reflection session. This provides our learners with an opportunity to reflect on their learning and the challenges and successes of the day. This is an opportunity for our learners to sel goals and to plan the next steps needed to achieve them.

Supporting Students

  • Clear expectations are set for students
  • Our learning engagements are interactive to ensure that our learners are engaged at all times
  • Our younger learners also receive resource packs
  • Mini-lessons are provided at the start of sessions to explain tasks
  • Our program continued to focus not only on knowledge but on building skills that will enable our students to become independent learners
  • Our tasks are differentiated in order to ensure that our tasks meet the learners’ needs
  • Our students are grouped according to mixed ability levels, levels of ability, or areas of interest
  • Our learners are given opportunities to experience flipped learning where presentations, videos or materials are uploaded in advance
  • Our weekly tasks and expectations are shared so that our learners can be responsible for their own learning
  • Our teachers provide the children with daily summaries of the learning to ensure that the learners are well informed of all tasks and expectations
  • Our teachers continue to use inquiry as an approach to learning where students are given opportunities to make real-world connections through exploration and questioning
  • Our students are given opportunities for agentic learning where they are encouraged to research or explore areas of interest
  • Our students are provided with continuous feedback which enables them to grow as learners
  • Our teachers use authentic assessment to ensure that our students are able to demonstrate their conceptual understanding, knowledge, and apply the skills learned in real-world situations

Supporting Parents

  • Parents receive newsletters at the beginning of each unit which provides them with information about the unit and the learning outcomes
  • Daily summaries are posted on Seesaw so that parents are able to ensure that all work is completed
  • Parents are kept well informed on their child’s learning through the use of Seesaw
  • Parents are able to observe their child’s work and feedback given by teachers by using Seesaw
  • Parents receive regular updates on the school events through Seesaw and emails
  • Parents are invited to weekly meetings with the PYP Leadership where they are able to share their thoughts and feedback
  • The parents receive monthly newsletters from the Principals
  • Parents are invited to join virtual webinars and grade level parent sessions where they are kept well-informed about the curriculum and teaching and learning
  • Parents are encouraged to share their feedback through weekly questionnaires
  • Parents are encouraged to give feedback on their child’s learning and become actively involved in the assessment process

Some of the apps and online channels currently used for virtual learning are

  • Raz-Kids plus
  • Prodigy
  • Whiteboard
  • Jamboard
  • iMovie
  • Procreate
  • Keynotes
  • Seesaw
  • Google Classroom
  • Google Meet

Please don’t hesitate to contact us directly if you have any questions regarding any of the matters discussed.

Secondary School

There has never been another time globally that has had such an instant impact on the way we deliver learning as Covid-19. During this unprecedented time, both teachers and students have had to try to adapt to working remotely in an effective way. At SBS, we have quickly adapted and made some necessary changes in order to support our students’ learning from home.

What online learning looks like at SBS

There has never been another time globally that has had such an instant impact on the way we deliver learning as Covid-19. During this unprecedented time, both teachers and students have had to try to adapt to working remotely in an effective way. At SBS, we have quickly adapted and made some necessary changes in order to support our students’ learning from home.

Supporting students

Student training
Educators around the world have found online learning quite challenging, and have sometimes been unable to deliver quality online lessons for their students because of a lack of access to appropriate bandwidth or devices, and a lack of school readiness. We have been quite lucky that this has not been the case at SBS. Before lockdown, we took time to train our students to use google classroom. While training teachers to use new digital platforms was urgently required, we felt that there was an equally similar need for students to understand the fundamental knowledge of the platforms we were intending to use for online lessons.

Teaching time
In secondary school, we have reduced the teaching time from 55 minutes to 40 minutes allowing students to spend less time on computer screens. The last 15 minutes of each lesson are spent by completing tasks off-screen. This was a mutual decision between parents and teachers. We both understood that spending many hours in front of a computer screen wouldn’t be good for our children especially if online learning was long term – which seems to be the case. This is a good example of how powerful our parent-teacher collaboration is at SBS.

Assessment and giving feedback on student learning
Our teachers use the assessment for learning (AFL) approach to teaching and learning. This creates feedback which is then used to improve students’ performance. Our students have become more involved in the learning process and ultimately gain confidence in what they are expected to learn and to what standard. We understand that assessment and feedback can be challenging for both teachers and students. During our teacher professional development for remote learning, our major focus has been aiming at closing gaps between learners and where they want to be in their learning and achievement. Several online tools and resources such as, padlet, mentimeter, kahoot, etc, are being used by our teachers to help their learners to do this.

Learning science remotely.
We understand that doing practicals is an integral part of learning science. This cannot be achieved remotely. In addition to the variety of online simulations for labs used by our teachers, whenever it is deemed safe to do a practical or an experiment from home, our teachers will send materials to students’ houses. Of course safety of our students and the people at home is a major concern, so caution is taken before sending materials to students’ homes.