You will notice from Learning Activities planned for week of 30th March 2020 that Mental Health and Well-being are prioritised. We are listening to daily updates from senior health professionals on how our nation is faring and taking our cue from them. Families have different contexts, different resources, some have lost jobs, others are living in packed houses, many are working as health care professionals and dealing with that stress, and many more are minding additional relatives and neighbours. Learning Activities are to be used only as they suit your family situation. As shared on a previous blog, be mindful of different family circumstances:
– X in my child’s class has everything done and we’ve barely started. Will my kids fall behind?
Even if everything were equal in terms of support and time and number of kids etc (which its not) kids learn at different rates. In the class there’s a wide range of levels in all subjects, there’s different paces and there are many kids working on differentiated level of work. It’s almost impossible for teachers do differentiate at the moment, so you have to do it. By expectation and by time.
Your child will not fall behind. This is all revision and reminder work. If kids could learn new concepts without specific teaching we wouldn’t need teachers. They will cover all of this again, multiple times.
– I’m not doing any work with my kids. All their doing is Lego, cooking and playing outside.
All of this is learning. Very valuable learning. Give yourself and them a break.

Teachers adjust and adapt plans daily depending on how children are responding in class. This is not an expectation when following Learning Activities in the home. School closure is an opportunity for children’s voice to be heard, for the learning to be child-led, for self assessment and self reward. These are higher order skills. We know as teachers that it takes years of practice for the children to become independent learners. However, this is a chance for many older children to take up this challenge. As parents are leaders in the home, you may need to frame the child-led activities e.g. set times that suit your other responsibilities. Encouraging children’s voices goes hand in hand with encouraging responsibility, cooperation and honesty.

We see the value of technology in setting up virtual meetings and chats at this time of social distancing. This is very welcome. It is also very important we use our technology in a helpful, respectful and considerate way. Do reflect on the possibility that comments or suggestions on WhatsApp, Instagram and other social media could put people under pressure. We are all more vulnerable at this time of crisis. Is every post definitely a compassionate communication? Are we sure we are not airing grievances or annoyances or boasts but instead bringing joy and care?

Final words: can the children identify what the featured picture is? Clue: It’s from the back of the school… the garden… the pond. Plenty to research in nature during spring, so much growth and possibility…

Have a peaceful and relaxing weekend!