Grade 5-9 Synchronous Courses


Synchronous courses offer the same program of study as an online course, with the added benefit of weekly meetings with a teacher and working alongside a cohort of your peers. Synchronous courses provide overall structure for students, with the expectation that they will work to keep up with the schedule set by the teacher for assignments and assessments. The accountability of the weekly meeting is designed to support learning of challenging concepts and content, encourage student interaction and community building, and provide a natural place for students to ask questions and develop deeper understanding. 


Synchronous courses provide regular touchpoints where students meet with their teacher and classmates on a weekly basis. Regularly scheduled times set by the instructor allow students to connect with teachers to receive instruction, clarify assignments, and ask questions in a group setting. Synchronous course options allow students the opportunity to connect with their teachers and other students in a more typical classroom style, providing the chance for students to be known and feel more accountable for completing their work. Teachers may use weekly meetings to answer common questions, clarify assignments, discuss complex topics, and build community through interactive discussions and review activities.

How Synchronous Courses Function

Take a look at the Synchronous Cohorts - 2023/2024 schedule for specific days and times.

Student Responsibilities and Expectations

Teacher Responsibilities and Expectations

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Does it cost any more to enroll in a synchronous course compared to an asynchronous course? 
    • No, the cost to the student is the same for a synchronous course as it is for any other online course enrollment.
  2. What if I have to miss a meeting for an appointment or other unforeseen conflict? 
    • This should be communicated to your teacher. Students should arrange activities such as regular piano lessons or sports practices at a time that does not conflict with scheduled class meetings. It is understood that conflicts come up, but please communicate with your teacher well in advance.
  3. Can my student take just one synchronized cohort for an online course or do they have to take all across their grade level?
    • Absolutely - they can take just one or multiple synchronous options! Figure out what works best for your child’s learning style, level of independence and degree of desired flexibility.
  4. How does the course schedule work?
    • The meeting times for each synchronous cohort will be posted in SOPHIE. Your K-9 support teacher can also let you know when specific classes are meeting. When planning the schedule, our team takes care to avoid overlap between class time for the different subjects across the same grade level. This allows students to take all synchronous offerings if they so choose.
  5. How long are the synchronous classes?
    • At the Grade 5-9 level, Zoom classes are 30 minutes in length.
  6. What happens if my student falls behind?
    • Just like in any classroom environment, things happen. Students are encouraged to keep attending the class and to work with their teacher to catch up. Teachers are prepared to support students when things don’t go as planned. 
  7. Are teachers available outside of the posted class times?  
    • Absolutely. Teachers will have office hours times posted in their Moodle, or Brightspace.  
  8. Are students required to have cameras and audio on?  
    • Yes, this is a basic expectation of a synchronous class. One of the goals of these classes is building community and students are expected to participate in this way.
  9. Are the courses semester or linear pacing?
    • Courses are held over the school year in a linear fashion. Classes start in the third week of September and run until mid-June.
  10. Do I have to attend the live meetings?
    • Yes! This is the main part of a synchronous class. Of course, there are absences that you cannot avoid, like sickness or appointments. Please communicate with your teacher.
  11. Is there a minimum enrollment necessary in order to have a synchronous course happen?  Also, is there a maximum number?
    • Building community is important to synchronous classes so we will require that a minimal number of students enroll.  If we do not get the minimum number of students, the ones that are enrolled will automatically be moved to asynchronous. As far as a maximum number, we realize that an online Zoom class can reach a maximum practical size, so if this happens, we will open up a second weekly meeting time to accommodate more students.

                      Revision #21
                      Created 10 March 2020 18:21:38 by Caitlin Village
                      Updated 3 January 2024 22:48:33 by Karen Roeck