September 10, 2021
Dear families of new students,
This morning we had our traditional Trojan Kickoff event outdoors – we enjoyed the beautiful weather and had our school spirit on full display! Check out some photos on our Instagram page @weston_high_school_ct.
This week’s tips for new families relate to organization. Students’ organizational strategies directly impact academic achievement, so it is critical to establish and reinforce effective routines early on. Here’s how you can help:
- Encourage your student to use a paper planner on a daily basis. All students received a WHS planner at orientation; whether they use this planner or another of their choice, students should make a habit of writing down their assignments, appointments, and reminders.
- Help your student use Canvas effectively. Canvas is our Learning Management System. Teachers post important information on Canvas, including upcoming assessments, class announcements, office hours, and digital course materials. Students should check Canvas regularly, but it is important to note that not all assignments will be posted there. Encourage your student to play around with the settings so that the preferred view and features are selected. Also, sign up as a Canvas Observer if you have not already done so – instructions can be found here.
- Encourage your student to reach out for help – the earlier, the better. Struggle and failure are a natural part of the learning process, but if left too long, they can sour the learning experience. Students who are struggling with a particular task or concept should reach out to their teachers early on. All teachers have office hours (these times are posted on Canvas), and students are encouraged to meet with their teachers for support during these times. We are also fortunate to offer one-on-one support available to all students through our Writing Center and Math Lab. These supports are available by appointment, and students are encouraged to plan ahead and book early.
Because organization is a critical component of success in high school, it may be tempting to do the work for your student –to keep a calendar for them, to check Canvas for them, to make appointments or reach out to teachers for them. Instead, put your student in control, find ways to empower them – support them in taking ownership of this process, show interest, make suggestions, monitor their progress, and celebrate successes.
Please keep a lookout for my letter to all parents next week detailing our plans for Back to School Night, Thursday, September 30.