School Closures in PA: Online Learning for Pennsylvania Students

Instructor: Bethany Calderwood

Bethany has taught special education in grades PK-5 and has a master's degree in special education.

As Pennsylvania schools have been closed by state officials in response to COVID-19, students statewide are faced with the need to learn from home. This article provides some pointers on navigating this season of school closures.

Learning From Home in PA

Pennsylvania's 500 school districts are home to over a million and a half students. Currently, all of these students are affected by mandatory school closures. As schools seek to create distance learning plans, parents and students are working on ways to learn from home. Online resources are the perfect way to jump start your student's learning plan, or to supplement the materials you receive from your school.

How to Study at Home

  1. Determine your learning goals. You may have guidelines from your school. If not, choose one learning goal to continue something you were studying when school closed, and one learning goal related to a topic you find interesting and motivating.
  2. Gather resources. Collect the information you have from your school, then add online resources. Find the school supplies you may need and put them in an easily accessible location.
  3. Create a schedule. Choose a time of day that you will work on learning tasks, and stick to it. Maintaining a routine that resembles parts of your regular school day can help with this transition. Be sure to intersperse work time with plenty of breaks.
  4. Set aside time for your physical and mental health. Important activities to include in your schedule are:
  • Movement and exercise - take a walk, do an exercise video, kick a ball in the yard, or learn a new dance.
  • Fresh air - walk, run, jog, climb a tree, read a book on the porch, or have a picnic.
  • Sleep - as part of your schedule, be sure to get a healthy amount of sleep.
  • Healthy food - it's tempting to snack all day when you're learning from home, but have regular healthy meals instead.
  • Communication - call, text, or video chat with friends and family members. Setting aside time outside of your study schedule for these social interactions can help to ease stress.

Using for Online Learning in Pennsylvania is an excellent resource to supplement your home learning. has material covering a wide range of subjects and grade levels, so you're sure to find something relevant to your needs.

  • Brief video lessons (5-10 minutes long) are the perfect way to learn a new topic or review something you worked on in school. In addition, if you have schoolwork on a specific subject and need an additional explanation, you can watch one or more videos explaining the topic from a different point of view.
  • Step-by-step solutions written by subject matter experts can provide you with valuable homework help and practice.
  • Quizzes and practice tests are provided for every subject area.
  • Flashcards can help you review and study material.
  • Project and activity ideas give you plenty of options for fun offline learning at home.
  • Essay starters and discussion questions can help you evaluate the content of your independent reading material.

At-home learning doesn't have to be a burden. Use to help you do your best on your home learning, and enjoy your time at home while making the most of it.

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