Dear Stone Ridge Parents/Guardians,
With the upcoming return to virtual instruction, and as part of our Continuous Learning at Stone Ridge, we hope to provide parents and guardians with additional resources for supporting your child at home. With each age and stage of development, from our earliest learners to our Fourth Academic students, comes the need for mission-grounded, social-emotional learning hand in hand with students’ academic work. Institutionally, we understand that the challenges of both hybrid and virtual instruction have complex and mutable implications for your children and their social-emotional experience of school, peer connection, unstructured time, etc.
It resonated deeply with me this week, in particular, to hear from a few students that their own teachers reflected aloud on the sadness associated with saying ‘goodbye for now’ in person as we shift again to virtual instruction. We know that our students thrive on connection; Sacred Heart education is about relationships at its core and about bringing the heart of Christ into our interactions with one another. Educators across the country, while cognizant of the distance as key to community well being, also mourn the loss of their in-person connections and relationships with students. Our call to teaching is exactly this, a vocation which draws us into a learning environment and into relationship with one another.
As a school, we are learning a tremendous amount from the resources within both the national and regional landscape of independent, and specifically Sacred Heart schools. Our hope is to share a few of these periodically with you as parents and guardians. As always, we are here to partner with you in any way needed; our Counseling Department, divisional leaders, and faculty are readily available.
The first resource I’d like to share is from Parenting in Place: Helping Families Thrive in Challenging Times. This eight-week master class will support parents and guardians around topics of including:
- education and social-emotional development in this unprecedented school year
- managing parents’ energy and mental well-being, while needing support in talking with children about race, divisiveness in politics, and other challenging subjects
- practical strategies for managing what lies on the horizon for this year, including that which is still unknown
Each week features masterclasses (hosted on Zoom) on Tuesday evenings from November 17 through January 19. Provided by a group of parenting experts, therapists, authors, educators, and neuroscientists, this series provides strategies and ideas for how you and your family can thrive this fall. Some of these experts have been featured at Stone Ridge as speakers, so we hope that you will consider participating.
The second comes from Dr. Lisa Damour who has begun a podcast, focusing on parenting. Dr. Damour emphasizes that “Raising kids can be a bumpy, stressful, and uncertain process – [and this] podcast brings sane, informed, and practical perspective to your timely and timeless parenting questions.” Recent topics include: how gender shapes parenting, how to motivate and support homework, anxiety and depression, and more.
Finally, please note that Julia Ewart, Director of EdTech & Innovation and I will be hosting a series of Parent Education & Engagement sessions around the topic of virtual and hybrid instruction in the coming weeks. During each of these sessions, participants will hear from faculty and divisional leaders on how we can continue to partner together around continuous learning. Registration and RSVP information will be coming soon.
Director of Curriculum and Professional Development