Dear Parents/Guardians

Thanks to everyone who emailed appreciation for work done by staff to date. It is very affirming to hear positive comments that nurture perseverance to deal with the challenges still to come. Staff had several meetings by phone/email/other today to hone our plans and share with you later this week. As principal, I am very proud of working with such a hard-working group. In addition to teaching plans, many staff are volunteering in their local neighbourhood initiatives, some requesting references; many are juggling parent responsibilities of working from home and looking after children/extended family.

What are our expectations today, Day 5 of school closure, as educators attempting to be there for children in abnormal circumstances? Adults: reflect on what kind of routine suits your family when you’re all at home together, trying to get work done, trying to remain harmonious, trying to notice the good things about one another. Give yourselves and the children this week to adjust. Children: be kind to your parents and siblings; do three pieces of obligatory work (numeracy and literacy related), and choose from the other options from the Learning Activities sheet depending on your family situation.

Things to reflect on: Are you a family that needs a definite timetable? Do you have a mix of children who benefit from a flexible arrangement and those who need a structured day? Have you had an opportunity to sit down together and agree expectations for your family in these unusual times? Can you agree times for independent work, shared work/games, screens, outdoor time? How do you motivate yourselves? Reward yourselves? Sanction yourselves? Making group decisions on these practical matters can help long term. Children can make very useful suggestions if asked. Children should also be able to justify their answers. What is the good reason they should be allowed to do xxxx? At school, they are expected to justify and give evidence to prove their answers are worthy. That can be an expectation at home too.

Here’s a link to some calming ideas for the whole family:

And the final word goes to the anonymous parent:

 ..you can feedback to xxx teachers and SNA xxxxx is working away …xxxxx read 10 books the first day couldn’t stop [them]!!! And I have noticed how excellently the teachers must have been teaching the kids about handwashing because xxxxx was a pro and we certainly didnt go into that level of detail with xxxxx as we thought [they] might not respond well !! So thanks to all the excellent team there in DSP we are set for handwashing and for homework for weeks to come. Hope you are ok too.