Online Learning - Hybrid and Full Distance Learning
Whether you choose to attend school in our hybrid model or learn from home in full distance learning, you'll be using a chromebook or laptop to as part of your classwork this year!
NOTE: Should the district or a school go into full distance learning for all students, the Parent Guide for Distance Learning describes expectations, practices and other information to help students be successful in full distance learning at home.
All students PK-12 will receive devices from the district; a chromebook for grades PK-8 and a laptop for students in grades 9-12. All teachers will structure their classes in Google Classroom. Zoom links within each Google Classroom class will allow students to connect to their teacher/class at scheduled times when learning from home. Take a look at our Info Sheet on logging into your device and connecting to Zoom and Video on logging into your device and connecting to Zoom.
This page will provide you information on what to expect during the 2020-21 school year, and to help you and your child connect to Google Classroom. All Hamden students can choose to attend school in our Hybrid model or at home in full distance learning.
Elementary students will attend school four days per week, for 5 1/2 hours per day. On the day they are not in school, the teacher will provide activities and assignments for students to do independently at home. The day at home will also be a day when teachers and students may schedule time to meet together on zoom.
Students should bring their charged chromebook to school every day, as they may also be assigned independent work on their chromebooks to do while at school.
Middle and high school students will attend school in one of two groups: One group attends on Mondays and Tuesdays (last name A-K) and the other group attends on Wednesdays and Thursdays (last name L-Z). Each group of students also attends school every other Friday.
Students will have a full schedule of classes made up of students in both groups. That means that about half of each class is in school on any given day, which allows for a small number of students to be together in school at one time. The students at home will connect to class at scheduled times through a Zoom link provided in the Google classroom for that class. In school and at home students may be placed in groups to work together in Zoom Breakout Rooms. Students should bring their charged chromebooks or laptops to school each day, as they may use them as part of classwork.
Class assignments, videos, activities and assessments will be structured in Google Classroom classes.
Full Distance Learning
Students who attend school virtually in full distance learning will enter their Google classes each day as assigned by their teachers. The Google classes will include live lessons, video instruction, activities to be done independently or in groups, assignments and assessments.
What is Google Classroom?
Google Classroom is a platform that allows teachers to provide a virtual classroom for their students. Each teacher will create his/her own Google Classroom with assignments, digital resources, assessments and virtual interactions with other students. Teachers' classes will include the same students who were in their face-to-face classes - so students will have the same teachers and similar assignments to what they would have if in our normal school schedule.
There are a million youtube videos that show you how to use Google Classroom. Here's one to try - the Parent's Guide to Google Classroom 2020, or go ahead and search for more!
Logging in to Google Classroom
Your child should log in to Google Classroom and complete their assigned work each day.
To log in to Google Classroom, go to Classroom.google.com and enter your username and password. (Many students already know their usernames and passwords.
Usernames and Passwords
Usernames have been created in this way: Students last name, first initial, and last two digits of year of graduation. For example, a student named Devante Jonas that graduates in 2028 would have a username of firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note that @hamden.org needs to be included at the end.
Email and Communication
Google Classroom has communication methods built-in. Students and teachers will communicate with each other regularly through the Google Classroom application.
Each student will have what looks like an email account that is the same as their username (students last name, first initial, and last two digits of year of graduation - for example, email@example.com). These accounts will only work within the Google Classroom application. They cannot be used to communicate with anyone outside of the Hamden Public Schools community.
In addition, parents and students can communicate with teachers directly via email if they use a personal email account. (Again, the account used to log into Google Classroom, although it looks like an email address, will not work outside the Google Classroom environment.) Although most communication between teachers and families will be through email and/or Google Classroom, parents or students who want to speak to a teacher by telephone, should email the teacher, then the teacher will call at a mutually agreeable time using his or her personal phone, which may appear as a blocked number.
How Parents Can Help
In addition to checking in with students on their online work in Google Classroom, parents can
- Make sure your child charges his/her device each night. The charging cord should stay at home.
- Provide your child with a space to work if possible
- Minimize distractions during schoolwork time at home
- Communicate with teachers if your child needs help with assignments
Special Education Support
School teams have reviewed services and are working to support student needs under the new distance-learning model. Services include, but are not be limited to: collaboration with classroom teachers, consultation with students and families, and virtual instruction and support activities.