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“The pandemic hasn’t stopped us”: a look back at 2020 with Yangon American International School

Every school around the world has faced an unprecedented year, and 2020 winds up, we speak to the teachers, parents, and students at Yangon American International School about the highs, the lows,  and the learnings.  

Fostering a Community Online 

“At Yangon American, we pride ourselves on being an inclusive community built on trust, positive relationships, and a strong family atmosphere. Collaborating and Communications with parents is a  huge part of the Yangon American culture, especially now during distance learning. It plays an integral  role in making sure the students are supported and are successful as they can be.” Said Emily Morris,  Vice Principal. 

“We are really lucky to have an awesome group of parents who are very supportive of what our program is doing and where we would like to be in the future. We have had a great experience in having  constant open communications with the parents, for them to give us feedback about how the program  looks like in their own home and how it works for their child specifically so that we can make any  adjustments to make sure we can meet the children where they are.” Added Ms. Morris. 

Predicting the Unpredictable 

“I am incredibly proud of how quickly and efficiently our teachers rose to the challenges of developing a completely unprecedented learning model. Never before have we witnessed an entire school community has to shift to a 100% remote learning model overnight. And alongside this, our students delivered. Their resilience, confidence, and abilities shone through as they continue to embrace the remote learning model. I am very much looking forward to seeing our whole community back on  campus, but until that day, we will continue with a fantastic online offering.” Stated Principal Robert  Crutchfield. 

Developing a whole child 

“The kids are encouraged to take control of their learning through the IB Program in order to develop physically, intellectually, emotionally, and ethically. I like that even via online learning, they still have  PE and music besides their usual math & English classes to be able to fully develop their emotions and physical strengths. They also learn new skills such as computer/technology and good manners in  online classes, such as respecting other classmates when they’re talking, raising their hands when they  want to talk and then mute themselves.” Stated Ms. Lien, mother of Mathias and Markus in grades 1  and 3. 

A smooth pivot 

“When my mum and dad told me that I was going to be doing online classes, I was quite confused as usual, if I don’t go to school it’s because it’s a holiday. When we starting our video classes, it was so different from being in the classroom, but at the same time, it was the same because my teacher has set up the day so we do the same things we would normally do in class. I do miss playing with my friends,  and also my teacher, but seeing them every day on video is really great.” stated Mathias in grade 3. 

“I have to admit that my wife and I were not looking forward to the concept of having our daughter at home with us all day every day at all. Of course, we love her dearly, but we also love sending her to school every day! I’m sure most parents would agree. However, the way that Yangon American set up remote learning has just been fantastic. I often sit next to my daughter as I do my work and she does her classes, and I have to say that despite her young age, I often learn from her classes too! I 

must say, I also have a new-found respect for teachers as I have seen the full spectrum of their roles from within.” Stated Mr. Travis, father of Faie in grade 1. 

As Yangon American International School looks ahead to 2021, the whole community is excited for the day they can meet again. But in the meantime, they will continue enjoying and embracing all that remote learning brings!

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