What’s Online Elementary School Really Like?
Duck, duck, goose…I spy…finger painting…counting to 10…following the leader…
These activities are instinctively elementary. So, what happens when such a tangible experience goes virtual? It gets personal!
In 2018, FLVS is introducing a new 48-course elementary curriculum that includes English Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies, Spanish, Art, and Technology. From Kindergarten through 5th grade, all these courses have a few things in common: they’re hands-on, empowering, and designed with elementary students in mind. Each course incorporates activities students can do in their own home, encourages them to use their personal experiences to power their learning, and includes plenty of teacher time to support individual students. It doesn’t get more personal than that.
Virtual education is tried and true for middle grades through higher education, but for elementary, it can be a bit more challenging. Students are younger, attention spans are shorter, and academic learning is brand new. These challenges inspired the team to create a unique learning experience for these young learners. The best part of a virtual elementary program is that it allows students to have experiences they would never have in a physical classroom. “Our courses are built for dialogue, empowering students to take ownership of their learning. Every lesson has a hands-on or off-screen activity,” says Jaimi Gruler, Senior Manager of Elementary Products. These hands-on activities ensure that students are making real-life connections as they learn. Sample offline activities include an Interactive Notebook, reflections, collaborations, practice labs, activity sheets, nature walks, and sharing with a friend or family member.
When students are working online, directions are clear, designs are fun, and learning is interactive. Courses are broken up into modules, lessons and pages, with students learning subjects in a variety of ways. A typical lesson includes bright, colorful photographs and illustrations, game-like activities for practice, videos, storybooks, activity sheets, and either a quiz or assignment. Offline opportunities ask students to “Try,” “Think,” “Write,” or “Share” an activity with a friend or family member. These components are what make these courses so personal. Students can complete lessons following their own schedule, reflect on their own experiences to connect their learning, choose their own topics or materials for activities, and participate in online live lessons called “Class Time” with other students.
Custom activities were built specifically for our FLVS elementary courses to feel game-like, and fun storylines guide them through each module. In Spanish, students journey to a different country. In Science, they become an inventor in a toy factory. In Art, they go inside paintings to learn techniques.
Throughout the courses, different characters guide students through their learning, making the experience feel more personal.
A virtual elementary school is new, different, and unlike any school in the real world. That’s because in a virtual classroom, students can journey with an astronaut to see the stars in one module, and travel on safari to Africa in another. They can learn about plant structures, build a model at home, and go on a nature walk to find examples in their own environment. They can learn about erosion while at the beach. The opportunities are limitless.
Below is an overview of each of the Elementary subject areas.
English Language Arts (ELA)
Focused on introductory reading skills and comprehension, the ELA courses include the five essential components of reading: phonemic awareness, phonics, comprehension, vocabulary and fluency. Students will read informative and literary texts, practice writing, grammar, and speaking and listening skills. Each grade level explores a different, adventure-filled theme to keep students curious and engaged!
Download ELA Course Fact Sheet / Overview (PDF)
Critical thinking and problem solving are two skills taught throughout Elementary Math. Rather than leaving students to ask, “When will I use this?”, key concepts are taught with real-world applications so connections are made early on. Songs, rhymes, videos, storybooks, and audio are used to teach and practice math skills in a fun and engaging way. Kindergarten-Grade 2 focuses on building a strong number sense, addition and subtraction within 20, place value, measurement and shapes. Grades 3-5 introduce multiplication and division within 100, fractions, decimals, shapes, area, and volume.
Download Math Course Fact Sheet / Overview (PDF)
Students taking our Elementary Science courses will explore Earth, Life, and Physical Sciences through problem solving, experimentation, creating models, analyzing and interpreting data, engineering, and more! Following the 5E Instructional Model, students will engage, explore, explain, elaborate, and evaluate as they learn. We’ll build on their curiosity by teaching them to ask questions and search for evidence to learn about the world around them.
Download Science Course Fact Sheet / Overview (PDF)
Our Social Studies courses takes a personal approach to introducing students to community and citizenship. They’ll learn important concepts and skills related to history, geography, and economics including their role as a citizen in their home, school, and community. Students will go back in time and learn about the foundation of American citizenship, journey to regions within the United States, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean Islands, and dive deep into the history of the state in which they live.
Download Social Studies Course Fact Sheet / Overview (PDF)
Elementary Spanish introduces students to both the Spanish culture and language. Each lesson is taught through diverse stories that give students the opportunity to see and hear Spanish in an authentic and fun context. Activities include hearing, speaking, reading, writing, and recording the language to reinforce learning.
Course Progression: FLVS offers a total of six online elementary Spanish courses, allowing students to progress through distinct levels – starting with Introductory Spanish and continuing through Levels 1-5. Students will be introduced to Spanish letters, pronunciation, and vocabulary. In more advanced levels, they will develop their grammar and writing skills. After a pretest and discussion with the teacher, students may advance to a higher level if they already have an existing level of Spanish proficiency.
Download Spanish Course Fact Sheet / Overview (PDF)
Physical Education (PE)
Students will be jumping, dancing, swimming, throwing, catching, kicking, tumbling, and more in our elementary PE courses! Students will learn about healthy lifestyle habits, teamwork, sportsmanship, goal setting, and strive for 60 minutes of daily activity. They’ll learn new skills to keep them moving with each grade level!
Download P.E. Course Fact Sheet / Overview (PDF)
Elementary Art encourages students in every lesson to feel confident in their own creativity and expression. Using the Elements of Art and Principles of Design, students will learn real art techniques through modeling and connect them to master artists. Students will develop their observational skills as they learn how to critique art while making cultural connections with works from around the world.
Download Art Course Fact Sheet / Overview (PDF)
Students taking our Elementary Technology courses will learn basic computer science skills, keyboarding, programming, and coding. Each of these skills is taught alongside meaningful technology topics such as tech safety, digital citizenship, bullying/cyberbullying, adaptive technology, social media, and robotics.
Download Technology Course Fact Sheet / Overview (PDF)
Learn more about the FLVS Elementary Program and enroll today!
Post by Michelle McRae, Engagement Writer
Is this a full time school program?
Hi Veronica! This year, FLVS is offering several ways for elementary students to experience the benefits of online learning! For families interested in a more traditional educational experience following a fixed school year calendar with weekly live instruction during interactive Class Time sessions, students may take multiple courses together with a group of classmates and one core teacher through FLVS Full Time OR FLVS Flex. For families interested in taking one or more courses following their own schedule, Flex elementary courses are now available with year-round rolling enrollment. Learn more at http://www.flvs.net/options.
Does my kindergartener need full-time or flex to pass?
Hi Mishayla, With FLVS Full Time, students take a full course load on a standard school year calendar. FLVS Flex students can also take a full course load if they would like but FLVS Flex offers more flexibility for student to take courses year-round so they can work on as many classes as they would like, at their own pace. Hope this helps!
How many hours per day/week does a student have to work on assignments? My daughter is going to 4th grade.
Hi there! The schedule will depend on the specific course and learning experience you choose. If you are following the regular school year with FLVS Full Time (or FLVS Flex), each student will need to dedicate time for each subject to complete the lessons and assignments for that week. When taking individual subjects through FLVS Flex, the schedule is a bit more flexible. You can work with your teacher to create a custom schedule that works for you, typically requiring some form of progress (for example, one lesson) each week. Each course is broken down into modules with individual lessons that consist of 5 parts. At the end of each lesson, students complete an activity, assignment, or assessment to demonstrate learning.
Check out these links for more information!
FLVS Full Time Elementary FAQs: https://flvs.net/full-time/more#faqs
FLVS Flex Elementary FAQs: https://flvs.net/flex/faqs#elementary
So excited!! I had wondered if parents were going to receive this information in the mail or online. Thank you for posting!
Hi. Can they take these courses in the summer of 2018? Thanks
Hi Pam. The courses will be officially launched in August 2018, so unfortunately they will not be available this summer – but they will be an option for summer 2019!
When will returning students / coaches be notified? We submitted our intent to return but want to make sure we have time to go over it and make the right choice.
Hi, I may sound silly; however, I am a 60 year old grandmother homeschooling my granddaughter who is 8. Can you tell me the when is the first day of flvs flex school? I am wanting to be prepared ahead of time. I saw the course have been verified but not assigned yet. Thanks.
Hi Lena! School starts on August 13, so your granddaughter will be placed in her courses at this time. We hope she’s excited for the start of the school year!
I am a first time homeschool parent! I am excited and nervous about this new engagement but everyone at FLVS has been extremely helpful with guidance and answering my questions. The Flex program will afford us the flexibility we need and still learn! Ready for August 13!
If my daughter does all her courses using flex under an umbrella school, she can recieve her diploma? It’s confusing because I read FLVS FLEX doesn’t receive a diploma but FLVS Fulltime does.
Hi there! If your daughter is registered with an umbrella school, then that would be considered her formal school of record. They may offer diplomas through their institution (even if she is taking some or all of her courses through FLVS Flex). FLVS Flex does not issue diplomas directly, as it is intended to provide courses on an individual basis. FLVS Full Time is our comprehensive public school option that does offer diplomas to graduates. This post should help to clarify the differences! http://blog.flvs.net/differences-between-flvs-flex-and-flvs-full-time
Hi there , we are also looking at an umbrella school option. Is that the route you ended up choosing?
My son is in 5th grade and he would like to take Spanish as a flex FLVS course. Would he need to start at the introduction level? If so, how long are each of the sessions and will he be able to complete through the 5th grade session by the time he enters 6th grade?
I’m looking to do math for my 3rd and 4th graders through FLVS flex, because they have practice during the day they wouldn’t be able to make the “live” classes. What are the alternatives to the live class?
Hi Ester! The live Class Time sessions are recorded so your students can watch at their convenience. While Class Time is recommended as a great way to interact and engage with teachers and peers, only two sessions are required to be attended live for credit.
If my student transfers to Flex Elementary after finishing the first semester in a traditional classroom successfully, will he receive credit for that semester or will he have to start again at the beginning?
Hi there! Yes, if your student has finished the first semester, they can sign up for the second semester (“Segment 2”) of their courses with FLVS Flex.
How does flex work with traditional school? What would my son do during math instruction each day, if he he is taking math through flvs flex? Can he get on the computer in the classroom and work on his flex course? Can he still go to traditional school for the entire day? I am not happy with the manner the school system approaches math and I am considering signing my son up for that one class.
Hi Michelle! If you would like your son to continue to attend his traditional school, this is something you can discuss with the administration and/or counselors at your current school. They can discuss your options and whether it’s possible for him to participate in an online course while he’s at school (perhaps in a computer lab setting) or to take an online class from home to supplement his other studies.
My grandson is 3rd grade level on a K1 reading level..and 3rd grade for math. Can he be enrolled in a lower grade than he actually is.. and then math a different level?
Hi Tammy! It is possible to sign up for different grade levels by subject based on your child’s academic needs. Give our elementary team a call at 407-513-3604 and they will be happy to provide more information specific to your needs.
Are homeschool students enrolled in FLVS FLEX able to participate in monthly meet ups and field trips? Thanks!
Hi Ashleigh! As of right now, our monthly meetups are exclusive to FLVS Full Time. FLVS Flex does offer some face-to-face opportunities, but these are usually hosted by club sponsors or specific teachers for certain subject areas. On the elementary level, we do host a few additional regional field trips for Flex students in younger grades. We hope this helps!
Hi. My daughter is in 2nd grade gifted in her school. Her reading assessments, A.R. level and all related evaluations place her in 6th grade reading level. Could I keep her in her school, stop attending language there and sign up for a higher grade language in FLVS Flex?
Yes! Many students accelerate their learning with FLVS by taking more advanced courses. If your daughter will stay at her current school for other schoolwork, we recommend speaking to the counselor and/or administrator at your current school to explore this as an option. A representative from the school may contact one of our district relations managers for more information if needed! https://www.flvs.net/florida-school-solutions/counselor-resource-center
Hi! dow to i make an account after i submitted all of my documents?
Hi Nicole! You will received an email after your application has been submitted, and again when it is accepted. Here are the steps to enroll with FLVS Full Time and FLVS Flex
Are flex students required to take the FSA test as it is required in traditional public school or can it be opted out?
If registered with their local school district as a homeschool student, state testing is not required. If the student is taking one or more elementary courses while enrolled at their traditional school, they will follow their local school requirements.
If my son is going to 1st grade, but I want him have a refresher for Kindergarten reading, would that affect his grade in traditional school?
He struggled a lot during this year in kindergarten and I want to reinforce some of his core learning this summer before school starts up for 2019-2020 school term.
Hi Sherrelle. This would be a question for one of our elementary school counselors. You can find their email addresses here: https://www.flvs.net/student-resources/flex/advisement
My son struggled with math and ela this year, and I want him to retake these classes over the summer so he can be better prepared for next school year. Can we do this?
Hi Jen! If your son attends a public or private school, you can discuss this as an option with your current school. For students attending a traditional school, a school administrator or staff member will be required to approve the online course enrollments. If you have more questions, please contact our elementary team at 407-513-3604.
Hi there, my family will be moving to Florida at the end of July. I have a son going into 8th, a daughter who will be entering 7th and a son going into 5th. I’m interested in signing them up for the Flex. Is that considered homeschooling? Is it still a public school curriculum just at your own pace kind of thing? Does the Flex program have the same school days off? Summer vacation? As part of the Flex, would our kids need to take the FSA? Sorry for all the questions, I’m new at this and find all this a little overwhelming. I have no idea where to start.
Hi Malaina! This post should help. Take a look and let us know if you still have questions. 🙂 https://blog.flvs.net/differences-between-flvs-flex-and-flvs-full-time/
From what I’ve read, with Flex you follow your own schedule that you make up with the teacher. You do not have to take the state required testing like the FSA’s, However there is other testing required to insure they have learned the material. Because you dont take the required testing, they also do not offer a diploma through Flex either. Hope this helps!
If I start with Flex at grades 2 and 5 for my kids can I switch to Fulltime by Highschool and have them still receive their Diplomas? What would they have to do to switch for that?
Yes, this is an option! When taking elementary courses through FLVS Flex, your children will need to be registered as homeschool students with your local district home education office. For high school, you can enroll with FLVS Full Time by submitting an application prior to 9th grade. Check out this post if you still have questions!https://blog.flvs.net/differences-between-flvs-flex-and-flvs-full-time
My child is finishing first quarter of 4th grade, and we are going to start homeschooling next week (the beginning of the 2nd quarter.). Can he start there, or should I continue with his curriculum, and start the flex program 2nd semester? Is that an option? Or does he need to start from the beginning? Thank you!
Hi Chandra! When enrolling in an elementary course with FLVS Flex, you can sign up for segment 1 (the first semester) or for segment 2 (the second semester or “halfway point” for each subject). Hope this helps! Feel free to reach out to our elementary team for more information at 407-513-3604.
In FLVS Flex, are children able to do extracurricular classes, like Art, Music, etc. at their current school? My children are currently in a Magnet Elementary School outside of their assigned district school.
If so, would they be required to take the FSA?
Thank you for your guidance
Yes, this is usually an option depending upon availability and requirements of your local school. Students who are registered with the county as a homeschool student and take courses with FLVS Flex are not required to take the FSA. However, some public school students take a few extra Flex courses online; these students follow their physical school requirements and testing schedule.
We’re looking to sign up with flgs to start this upcoming February 2020, my child is enrolled in 1st grade in Public school. Is it possible to switch in February?
And what do I need from the school to show the records , and/or report cards?
Hi Mayra. If you are looking to start mid-semester, registering with your local county as a homeschool student to take courses through FLVS Flex will be the best option. You can learn more about this process and find contact information for your local district home education office at http://www.flvs.net/homeschool. If you’re interested in starting in January, FLVS Full Time Elementary will be closing soon for spring enrollment. You can learn more about both options at http://www.flvs.net/elementary.
I’m a first time homeschool mom of a fifth grader and we’ve been going strong since August. Recently I’ve been looking into flvs flex for my daughter to start in Jan. We only want to do the science, social studies, and art. Are we able to start these subjects in January or is it too late?
Is there a cap on the number of students that can enroll in FLVS flex or full time? Given the current pandemic, I imagine there may be an increase in applicants for next year. Is there a maximum amount of students that can enroll in FLVS either FLVS or full time?
Hi there. With FLVS Flex, we have ramped up efforts to support students across the state. If you are considering Florida Virtual School for next school year, we encourage you to get ahead by choosing a start date in July or early August. This will allow you to be placed in your courses and assigned to a teacher more quickly. We also encourage families to enroll for FLVS Full Time as soon as possible, as we have set application deadlines and staffing for the school is based on enrollment. Enrollment for FLVS Full Time usually closes in July based on number of applicants.
What grade level is appropriate for the Spanish course?
Hi Leslie! FLVS offers Spanish courses for students in Kindergarten through 12th grade! Learn more about our Elementary courses here: https://www.flvs.net/online-elementary-school-courses
Does FLVS provide some of the school supplies for elementary? Like math and reading books? Science equipment/supplies? Math manipulatives? Thank you in advance, I have started the process to enroll for 2020-21.
Hi Arelis. All materials are provided online, but you can download and print worksheets and use objects around the house for many class assignments and activities that take place away from the computer! Hope this helps.
Hi!!I’m the mother of 3 kids.kinder,1st grade and 2nd grade and I look for the best option for the course 2020/2021.FLVS Flex or Full?Thank you in advance!!
Hi Beatriz! Check out this blog post that compares the options: https://blog.flvs.net/online-school-options
I just moved to Florida and am needing to get my son enrolled in school. I just recently ran across this option as I was looking for online schools to try to enroll him in and wanted to try this out as I feel it would be a great fit for him. Though I found out late, I missed the enrollment period for the full time. Could I sign him up for the flex option, have him complete the courses required for 3rd grade and have it accredited towards his records to where he can successful pass his grade? Sorry, I am new to all of this and I feel this is the best option for him. With the pandemic happening, I do not want him attending public school.
Hi Sheigh. Yes, student can enroll with FLVS Flex year round. You can find more information about FLVS Elementary and register your child at https://www.flvs.net/elementary. 🙂
If we are looking to start the school year with virtual school due to Covid but hopeful to transition back to traditional school second semester is it better to enroll in Flex or Full-Time?
Both FLVS FT and Flex, students can transition at the semester change. While, FLVS FT would like students to stay the entire year, it is possible to transition at the semester.
Hi I’m the parent of a 2nd-grader. I’m not sure I read everything correctly, but it seemed like FLVS Flex credits did not transfer to traditional school, only FLVS FT did. Is that still true considering COVID-19 situation? The answer to Katie seemed to imply that doing FLVS Flex for this semester and then transferring to traditional school for next semester (Jan 2021) would be OK. Is that correct?
Hi Tarre, Yes – FLVS Flex and FLVS Full Time students can transfer to a traditional school if they would like. We recommend that students complete the first semester to ensure that grades are accepted by the school they are transferring to. Hope this helps!
If we choose to do FLVS Flex for our up coming 1st and 3rd graders when the school year is finished can we move them on to the next grade during the summer? Is in year round schooling?
Hi Nora. Yes, your students will have the option to advance to the next grade in the summer. FLVS Flex students can start anytime during the year with year-round enrollment.
We are considering the FLVS Flex option for our 5th grader this year due to COVID. What are the minimum “required” courses he would need to complete to graduate and move on to 6th grade? (He has ADHD and an ESE plan at his current school, so we would want to work at a slower pace and focus on the required courses). Also, does FLVS offer any support/ESE to enrolled students? Thanks.
HI Kristy, Students enrolled with FLVS Flex have a bit more flexibility in their schedule. You can work with your teacher to create a custom schedule that works for your students academic needs. You can reach out to our ESE team with questions or for support! https://www.flvs.net/student-resource/full-time/student-support-services/exceptional-student-education
Hi! New to the FLVS Flex. I have started my two middle schoolers already but now we finally made the decision to start my up coming 4th grader. My question is what courses are required for her to take for the year? Does she have to pick a special?
Hi Adrienne. With FLVS Flex, students can start courses anytime throughout the year and students can enroll in one or more courses. You can reach out to one of our school counselors for advising and support at https://www.flvs.net/student-resources/flex/advisement. Hope this helps!
I see many people are asking about starting virtual school and switching to traditional classroom setting later on. I read that it is advised to make the switch during semesters, how long is a semester and when would the next semester begin if I enroll my daughter for this Fall?
Hi Christina, We recommend students complete semesters prior to returning to their school. The first semester ends before Winter Break and the second semester begins when students return from Winter Break.
Hi, I’m thinking about homeschooling my son and enrolling him in the flex program for second grade (given the current situation). He’s been going to private school and is currently at an almost 3rd grade level. Should I enroll him in second grade Segment 1 or Segment 2? Also, if I plan to re-enroll him in private school in January 2021, would there be any issues? Would the Flex Program be considered an accredited program? I worry they might make him repeat the grade.
Hi Eliza. Our FLVS Counselors can help with this. You can reach out to them at https://www.flvs.net/student-resources/flex/advisement
Are there any courses for gifted children?
Hi India, We have an amazing ESE team on staff that works with our student/families in regards to accommodations for our students. You can reach out to our ESE team at https://www.flvs.net/student-resources/full-time/student-support-services/exceptional-student-education.
My first time enrolling in FLVS flex and I was wondering if anyone can tell me if I can get hard copies of the work instead of online school?
Hi Venette! Yes, you will be able to print all activities and assignments. Some assignment can be turned in by scanning your work where others will need to be completed online. You can reach out to your teacher to discuss your options or if you have specific questions about an assignment!
There’s great info on your website about overall time needed, but for a second grader in FLVS Full Time, what’s the average amount of time they spend a day specifically listening and watching the teacher online? Also, it’s mentioned that the meetings are live, are they recorded as well in case a student can’t login at a specified time one day?
Hi Erin, Teachers meet with students virtually twice a week for two hours with a 15-minute break in between subjects. Hope this helps! Here’s some more information about what your student will experience during Class Time, https://blog.flvs.net/elementary-class-time-is-the-best-time/?utm_source=facebook_organic&utm_medium=FLVS_Social&utm_campaign
How do I access the interactive notebook or is it a pad and pencil? Or Google drive?
I figured it out. Thanks!
Hi Julie, Interactive components vary by grade level and course. Please check with your teacher about this!
Are there answer keys anyway to the practice “printable” pages?
Hi Toni! You can check with your teacher for practice page answer keys.
We are considering the umbrella school program using FLVS Flex.
My question is since it is an umbrella school is considered a private school is my child limited to 3 classes at a time ?
Building on that question- it says up to 3 classes per semester but if we can enroll in Flex year round does how does that work ? Is it 3 classes at any given time ? If we work at our own pace we could finish some classes sooner than other classes and work through the summer.
Hi Elizabeth, Umbrella school students can take up to 6 courses if needed. We highly encourage students to take 3-4 courses at a time and work more quickly rather than juggling 6 at a time. There are no caps on the amount of courses a student can complete in a year with FLVS Flex. We just do not allow more than 6 courses at one time. Hope this helps!
I want to make the switch from our local public school to flvs full time this 2021-2022 year. I also want to help them brush up on a few things over the summer with flvs flex. What do I need to give to our school to notify them of the change?
Hi Chelsea, Here are the steps to enroll with FLVS Flex: https://www.flvs.net/flex/enroll?source=flex-footer
Can my 1st grade daughter start with flex now and when enrollment starts in Nov. Start full time?
My family just moved here to the States and my sister would really like to know how her daughter could get acclimated with school. Now that classes are online, it’s great to know that schools are still putting in the effort to make it interactive with game-like and storytelling themes. I think my niece would enjoy the k-5 curriculum with core courses in English, Social Studies, PE, Arts, and even Spanish or other foreign languages.