WELCOME BACK TO SCHOOL (Sorta)
Your SiLAS family hopes you all had a happy and safe summer. We understand the tremendous amount of pressure that you, your families, your students and their families are under, and we are here to help.
SEL has never been more important. It’s reported by Unicef, that as the pandemic continues, nearly 3 in 10 parents have reported their child experiencing mental health distress due to social distancing and school closures. (That is in addition to the number of general and special education students that were struggling prior.)
As you all know, our simulation software can be used in class or virtually, and increases children’s coping skills, improves behavior and helps keep children connected and engaged. A huge benefit to both you and your student’s parents.
With users throughout the United States, SiLAS saw the need to adapt and add to our program to provide implementation options for almost any setting. Over the summer, our development team was in full swing..Whether you are return user, or brand new to SiLAS, We think you will love what you see
Remember, our curriculum is fully provided and we have free and continual training.
The most obvious development is the overall look and feel of the SiLAS website. As the number of organizations using SiLAS continues to diversify, so does our curriculum. Not only is the site more appealing, but you will find it easier to navigate. The buttons for each component are now color coded. By using different colors, you can access the topic you are looking for in no time! Below are a few enhancements made to the curriculum over the summer.
With SiLAS, Social Emotional Learning can occur if you are Six Feet Apart from your classmate, or Six Miles Away from your classmate. With our three “create” features, the animation process can be accommodated for use in any educational setting.
Have a question? Check out the “Tutorials and Cheat Sheets” tab to find the answer! A series of brief, step by step videos for each of the SiLAS components is right at your fingertips. Here is a link to our Training Modules as well.
The “Movie Library” tab is where you will find your student created animations and a wide-variety of example videos with topics ranging from “Introductions” to “What is Social Distancing?” These movies are great for showing the entire class or as a social narrative for an individual student.
By now you may be feeling like you are watching a late night Infomercial…WAIT! There’s more! And there absolutely is MORE!
SiLAS has added SEL lessons focusing on the timely and crucial topic of cultural diversity, discrimination and empathy. Our curriculum scope has been updated and with both the new and original lessons addressing the topic.
Do you teach students life skills? Are your students transition aged? If so, today is your lucky day! The Social Vocational tab has been updated to include Transition and Vocational Skills. Keep an eye out for teacher resources and materials relating specifically to life skills and transition IEP components.
Another change you may have noticed is that the “analytics” section has been given a new name, “Progress Monitoring.” With the new name comes additional student progress measures. Monitoring a student’s performance is a necessity for ALL students. SiLAS has made data collection quick and simple. Each lesson now includes a pre/post test to gather baseline data and skill performance after the lesson. The student activities included in each lesson can also be completed, submitted and assessed. Practitioners still have the opportunity to score student animations as well.
What hasn’t changed is the promise to our users.. As always, the SiLAS team is available to answer any question, brainstorm any ideas, or listen to a comment. Our training has continued across the country through the use of the tutorial library or “live” virtual training. Remember, this is at no cost to you or your district. We look forward to another great, albeit unbelievable, year!