WPS Elementary FAQs

Choosing Best Model for Your Family

Welcome!

To translate this newsletter, click on it then use the link to the right.


Para traduzir este boletim, clique nele e use o link à direita.

Para traducir este boletín, haga clic en él y luego use el enlace a la derecha.

لترجمة هذه الرسالة من المدرسة ، اضغط عليها ثم استخدم الرابط الموجود على اليمين.

Այս տեղեկագիրը թարգմանելու համար կտտացրեք այն, ապա օգտագործեք աջ կողմում գտնվող հղումը:

Чтобы перевести этот бюллетень, нажмите на него, затем воспользуйтесь ссылкой справа.

Bu bülteni çevirmek için üzerine tıklayın ve ardından sağdaki bağlantıyı kullanın.

Big picture
Family FAQ

What is the “Bridge to Hybrid” model?

The Bridge to Hybrid Model means:

  • Your child will start the school year remotely.

  • Your child will be assigned to a homeroom teacher and a cohort.

  • When the District begins the hybrid model, your child will come to school two days/week, on the Core Instruction days.

  • Cohort Scheduling:

    • On Mondays all children assigned to the same homeroom will meet with the teacher from 8:15 - 12:15 on Zoom.

    • Two days each week, students will follow the Core Instruction Schedule and two days each week they will follow the Extension Day schedule.


Here is an image that explains the Cohort Schedules by day:

Big picture

What do the daily schedules for students look like in the “Bridge to Hybrid” model?

Sample student schedules for each grade can be found here.


As explained above, students will follow the CORE DAY schedule three days per week and the EXTENSION DAY schedule two days per week.

What is the Watertown Virtual School (WVS) model?

The Watertown Virtual School Model means:

  • Your child will be learning remotely until at least February 8th. If the District makes a decision for students to return to school in the hybrid model (explained above), your child would NOT return. They would continue with virtual school.

  • Your child will be assigned to a homeroom teacher and a cohort (same as “Bridge to Hybrid”).

  • Your child may be assigned to classrooms with students and teachers from other Watertown elementary schools.

  • The Cohort Scheduling is the same as in the “Bridge to Hybrid” Model (see chart above):

    • On Mondays all children assigned to the same homeroom will meet with the teacher from 8:15 - 12:15 on Zoom.

    • Two days each week, students will follow the Core Instruction Schedule and two days each week they will follow the Extension Day schedule.

  • In February, if the “Bridge to Hybrid” students are back in school for their Core Instruction days, parents will have a chance to switch to the Hybrid model.


If you choose the Watertown Virtual School option, please fill out the enrollment form for the Watertown Virtual School no later than 11:59 on Monday, August 24.

What do the daily schedules for students look like in the “Watertown Virtual School” model?

The schedule is exactly the same as in the "Bridge to Hybrid" model!


Sample student schedules for each grade can be found here. Students will follow the CORE DAY schedule three days per week and the EXTENSION DAY schedule two days per week.

Can you tell me more about what the CORE DAYS are like?

On Core Instruction Days:

  • your child will receive direct, synchronous (meaning the teacher is with the students) instruction in math, reading, and writing, and word study. See the second tab on the Remote/Virtual schedule referenced above.

  • Students will be working live with their teacher from 8:15-12:15.

  • In the afternoon, students will be expected to do independent reading and online science learning activities. This is asynchronous (meaning that the teacher will not be with them).

What happen on the EXTENSION DAYS?

During these two days each week:

  • Your child will join their classroom teacher for Morning Meeting and Closing Circle using Zoom.

  • Your child will be complete work given by the classroom teacher. This could include practicing math facts, solving math problems, iReady lessons, reading an assigned article or chapter, writing a story, spelling practice, etc. This may be review work or challenge work, depending on the needs of your child.

  • Specials will occur on Extension Days as well. Your child will attend two specials (Art, Music, Gym or Library) on each extension day. These classes will be much smaller than they were in the spring and they are mandatory. See the third tab on the Remote/Virtual schedule referenced above.

  • Support services from other Watertown staff will be scheduled on Extension Days. This includes supports from Guidance, Reading teachers, Special Education teachers, English Language teachers, OT/PT, Speech/Language Pathologists, tutors, etc..

Does my child only work on the days they are meeting with their classroom teacher?

No, your child will be busy every day! They will join their classroom every morning to see their friends and teacher and have their Morning Meeting. If it is an Extension day for your child’s cohort, they will log off and complete the work that was assigned the day before and go to their Specials Class. They may also be meeting with a Special Education Teacher or EL teacher.

I am worried about screen time. Can you tell us more?

Students will be working remotely with their classroom teachers from 8:15-12:15 on their Core Instruction days. This does not mean that they will be looking at the screen the whole time. Your children will start their day with an interactive morning meeting. Teachers will provide short mini-lessons throughout this block of time. In addition to these mini-lessons, your child will complete some independent work, have small group instruction, and work together in pairs and small groups. Teachers will gather the group back together after these learning blocks to discuss the work the children did during this block of time. Children will also engage in interactive learning games and take movement breaks throughout the 4 hours.

How do I know what my child is working on?

Every Friday, you will receive information about the upcoming week in a "Weekly Learning Plan Template" This will include learning objectives, assignments that are due, any sessions your child may have with a reading teacher or a special education teacher, as well as the Art, Music, Gym, or Library schedule. All of the necessary links will be in the same chart.


Your child will also have a Google Classroom (Grades 3-5)or SeeSaw account (PreSchool--2). This will be a central location for lessons, assignments, and links needed for remote lessons.


We are working to make this as organized as possible for you and your children.

Will my child be provided with a computer?

Yes! Every student who needs a device will be provided with one. Students in Grades 1-5 will be able to borrow a Chromebook and Kindergarteners will be receiving ipads. These will be given out on the opening days of school. More information regarding specific days and times will be available at the beginning of September.

What about supplies?

Every student in grades k-5 will be provided with a box of supplies to ensure that they have all the materials to be successful while learning remotely. This will include pencils, crayons, markers, and grade-level specific materials that teachers have identified for all content areas. These boxes will be given out on the opening days of school. More information regarding specific days and times will be available at the beginning of September.

When will we know which teacher we have and which cohort we will be in?

We will likely need a couple more weeks to make these decisions and communicate this information to you. Know that we are doing as much as possible to get this to you as soon as we can.

What can I do to help my child succeed in remote learning?

The most important thing you can do right now is to help your child to be excited about the start of school! No matter what model you choose, they will have an excited teacher and a community of friends to meet!


Please make sure your child attends his or her class. Setting up a dedicated space for learning and meetings is also very important. If you have a desk or table that your child can work at comfortably with supplies close by, that would be helpful.


It’s important that your child feel like they are in school even if they are home.

What if my child is having trouble paying attention to remote learning?


Just as in the classroom, teachers will be differentiating their instruction to meet the needs of each individual child. If your child is having trouble focusing during the remote learning time, your child’s teacher will try different strategies such as a learning choice or a movement break. Remember to collaborate with your child's teacher. We truly want the best for all of our students.

What will the classrooms look like once we are back at school?

The biggest difference children and families will notice is the absence of extra furniture. Each room will have approximately 10 student desks that are 6 feet apart in rows and facing the teacher. The teacher will have a teaching space with all of their teaching materials in front of the whiteboard. There will not be extra tables to take small groups of children or soft items such as bean bags.

Will Watertown Public Schools provide bus transportation to the Boys & Girls Club?

No. Due to the changes at the Boys and Girls Club, Watertown will not be able to provide a bus to the club after school. Children who ride the bus will be dropped off in the afternoon at the same stop they are picked up from in the morning.


If you have any questions, please contact Shannon Dixon at the transportation office.


shannon.dixon@watertown.k12.ma.us