A Guide to Brightspace and Supporting Learning at Home | D2L
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D2L Supports Parents

A Guide to Brightspace and Supporting Learning at Home

Whether you are starting from scratch, or have experience teaching online, being able to pull together and share resources and content is important in these fast-moving times. Find a platform that allows you to gather resources in one place for your students to best support their at-home navigation of content. We know that many parents are now transitioning into facilitating learning at home, so we’ve put together this guide to help support parents with the resources they need to be successful. Need to log in to Brightspace? Visit our login finder.

Brightspace Parent and Guardian

Brightspace Parent & Guardian allows authorized parents and guardians to log in to Brightspace to see their child’s classroom activity feed, shared Portfolio items, graded items and graded feedback from instructors, upcoming assignments, and quizzes. This helps parents engage with their young learners and maintain awareness of upcoming work. It is not a parent-teacher communication tool and is meant to be a window into the classroom.

Brightspace Parent Guardian in Laptop and Mobile

The Brightspace Parent & Guardian tool is enabled on a school board or school district level.

Watch this video to learn more about the Brightspace Parent & Guardian tool.

This guide in the Brightspace Community contains details about Brightspace Parent and Guardian and shows how parents can use it effectively.

Privacy and Security FAQ:

What is your household’s definition of privacy?
Have a conversation with adults and children about what information should be private and what can be shared, by who, and how.
Not sure what apps your children are using?
Ask them to sit with you and show you what apps they use, how they use them, and whether personal information is shared.
Take an opportunity to lead by example.
Take breaks, set down devices when having face-to-face conversations, and involve children in decisions about sharing online.

How can I help minimize technical risks to student privacy and security?

  • Connect to a secure wireless network with a strong password. A secondary “guest” network can be set up on most routers to limit bandwidth used by streaming services, games, and other apps.
  • Choose screen names and login information that minimize the chance of a student being identified online.
  • Update software when prompted—these updates often address security vulnerabilities.
  • Consider using settings and parental controls built into operating systems, devices, and apps.
  • Set up separate accounts for each user on shared home computers, making sure students do not have “administrator” privileges. Keep adults’ business devices separate from ones used by students when possible.

How can I limit or monitor what my child is doing online?

  • Choose a central location for the family computers where adults can supervise what students are doing. A common charging station in the home can also serve as a “parking lot” for devices when taking breaks from screen time, at meals, and overnight.
  • Consider using parental controls to limit internet connectivity to certain times of the day, but be mindful that online tracking and monitoring apps may produce overwhelming amounts of uninformative data, so proceed with caution before exploring these.

Brightspace Support

To view additional resources or to get support, please visit our Brightspace community here.

Where can I find more information?

Read D2L’s security and privacy brochure.

Tips for Families:

  1. Prioritize Wellness
    • We are going through unprecedented and challenging times. Your continued attention to your children’s questions and concerns is important to their well-being. Model remaining calm, patient, and kind. We know that educator-led distance learning is new for everyone—for you, for your child, and for your child’s teacher. Be flexible with your child’s learning. If learning does not happen on one day, that is OK! The following day is a new opportunity to try again. Together, we will get through this.
  2. Follow a Routine
    • A routine is helpful for maintaining overall well-being. Set regular hours for sleeping, eating, and completing schoolwork. The routine should reflect the needs of the family.
  3. Identify a Workspace
    • If you can, designate a space where students will learn most of the time. Involve them in making that space their own by including books they love, art they created, and other personal items that make the space feel welcoming.
  4. Communicate with Educators
    • Educator-led distance learning is not homeschooling. Our educators are supporting the learning of your children by preparing lessons and activities and assessing learning. Each week, they will provide you and your child with a plan of learning for the week. Maintain regular communication with educators to understand your children’s progress and needs and how to support learning at home.
  5. Encourage Physical Activity
    • Movement and exercise are vitally important for health, well-being, and learning. Encourage frequent breaks for movement throughout the day. Make it a fun family activity and everyone can benefit!
  6. Monitor Screen Time
    • Encourage learning activities that do not require technology, such as reading, writing, math games, and more. Avoid having students engaged with a computer screen for lengthy periods. Your patience is appreciated as educators learn how to use technology effectively to support distance learning.
  7. Be Creative
    • This time is challenging us to think creatively and to be innovative. Educators may suggest tasks, activities, and ways of learning that are new and different. Consider adding learning opportunities in everyday tasks such as cooking.

FAQ About Supporting Distance Learning at Home:

  1. What is the best way to structure my child’s day?
    • There is not one single solution to this question. Each child has individual needs, and you, the parent, know your child best. Some children will require a lot of structure, while others less so. Include your child in setting the schedule for the day and allow for flexibility.
  2. How do I manage this schedule while working at home?
    • Have a checklist.
    • Do the best you can given the situation.
    • Support with positive encouragement.
    • Move activities around to suit your work schedule, such as planning for quiet time during a conference call.
    • Be flexible on what is accomplished every day. Some days you may take a longer walk than others if it is nice out.
  3. Where do I get all the ideas for supporting my child’s learning at home?
    • Teachers have been sharing, and will continue to share, activities for you and your child to complete. If you require additional materials, see the free resources shared below.
  4. I’m not a teacher. What if I’m not doing this right?
    • Take a deep breath—there is no “right way” or “wrong way.” You need to take care of your family’s health and well-being right now. The learning will come if you incorporate different activities into your day.
  5. We don’t have reliable internet access—what do we do?
    • There are plenty of activities that don’t require the internet. Bake or cook, play board or card games together, go on a scavenger hunt in your neighborhood, read a book, draw a picture, show your child how to sew on a button, garden, go for a walk or a bike ride, play with building blocks, or make a blanket fort. Learning doesn’t have to be online!