A+ Schools Spotlight: Staying Creative During COVID-19

October 26, 2020

Many A+ schools have exceeded expectations in providing creative and engaging learning opportunities for students during the challenging, uncertain times of a pandemic. Whether online or in-person (or both!), A+ educators have maintained their “A+-ness” as they’ve navigated a new education environment. See how Scotts Elementary (Iredell County), Sandy Ridge Elementary (Durham County) and ArtSpace Charter (Buncombe County) are keeping A+ at the forefront of their school’s mission.

Scotts Elementary

Students at Scotts Elementary in Statesville have been attending class in-person this fall, and the new classroom guidelines have not masked their creativity! Kindergartners used theater arts learning targets, such as making props and acting out scenes of a story, to demonstrate their ELA retelling skills. Students used the wise words from "Pete the Cat and His Magic Sunglasses" to remind everyone: "The birds are singing, the sky is bright, the sun is shining, and we're feeling ALRIGHT!" Scotts’ students also learned that no one needs magic glasses to look for the good in everyday. Great words to live by from Scotts Elementary Kindergartners (and Pete The Cat)!

Sandy Ridge Elementary

Distance learning at Sandy Ridge Elementary in Durham has brought the arts into students’ homes. Third grade teachers and the arts team at Sandy Ridge have been collaborating to combine the arts, science and social studies. Students have produced amazing projects on topics such as the solar system, landforms and communities while also focusing on arts standards. Third graders have been writing poems, creating songs and raps, and making two- and three-dimensional artwork to demonstrate their learning—all from home!

ArtSpace Charter

Staff members at ArtSpace Charter in Swannanoa have been conducting distance learning from their classrooms, with many teachers bringing their own children (who are also ArtSpace students) with them to campus. These students became the school’s “artists in residence,” rehearsing and performing “The Rainbow Connection,” a theater arts production with instrumental music, singing, acting and dancing.

“It was a joy to see the stage light up again!” shared Executive Director Sarena Fuller. The performance was shared at three different showings, with a reduced capacity audience (three shows with 10-15 audience members spaced six feet apart). It was also recorded and shared with the school community. School climate and the arts are thriving at ArtSpace!