Newsletter from Mrs Stuart, 1st May 2020

1st May 2020

Dear Parent,

I hope you are all safe and well and managing to spend some quality time together as a family amidst these unprecedented times. I know how challenging this period is for many of our families and, as a school, we want to ensure we are offering as much support as possible to those who need it. I, therefore, would like to outline our role and what we are offering to our families during these unprecedented times.

What is the role of school during this time?

The role of schools nationwide has considerably changed, albeit on a temporary basis: we offer childcare to support parents who are key workers. This is to ensure that those people whose roles are critical in the response to Covid-19 can go to work knowing that their child is safe and looked after.

How can I best support my child?

We understand that many parents and carers wish to support their child with learning; social media is awash with parents’ suggestions and achievements when it comes to home schooling. We want to make it clear that the single most important thing you can do during this global crisis is to provide a calm, happy home for your child. Be there for them when they are anxious, worried or upset. Be aware of conversations you may be having about the ongoing situation which may not be suitable for children’s ears. Read with your child as much as you can – find joy in sharing a story!

How much work should my child be completing?

As a school, we have no expectation of work that must be completed during this time; the wellbeing of you and your child is the most important thing. However, if you wish to support your child in more formal learning tasks, we are providing weekly English and maths activities that complement the half termly projects we have uploaded on to our website. These weekly tasks are uploaded each Monday morning onto the Home Learning and Support section of our school website and also onto our new home-school platform, Seesaw.

If you would like to complete the activities with your child, we would be delighted to see their work if you wish to upload it via Seesaw. However, there is no expectation for you to do this so feel free to choose the activities you think they would most benefit from and complete them at your own pace, in your own way.

We have asked class teachers to review comments and questions received via Seesaw twice a week, therefore it may be a day or two before you receive a response. Class teachers will respond by either ‘liking’ the post or with a brief comment. It has been wonderful for staff to make this connection with the children in their class and we have all been so impressed with what children have been working on – from beautiful rainbow pictures, to home baking, to long division – lots of you have been very busy!

What if my family has limited access to technology and the internet?

We understand that some families may not have access to a laptop or shared tablet and this can make home learning tricky for those who would like their child to access online content. As stated above, there is no expectation for any work to be uploaded to Seesaw for teachers to review. If your child can view tasks via any device, it would be absolutely fine for work to then be completed on paper, or in the exercise books sent home a few weeks ago. Remember, simple things like writing a daily diary, or helping you to calculate costs for weekly shopping are excellent ways to keep children’s minds active while practising basic literacy and numeracy skills.

Please continue to do what is right for you and your child; every family’s circumstances are different and we know that you will be doing all you can to ensure your child is happy and content during their time away from school.

Please tell your child to look out for a story that I will be sharing with them next week.  It’s my favourite!  Can they guess what it is?

Take care and stay safe!

Mrs Julie Stuart