How's it going?
As a parent I’d be asking myself at this point: What’s school like at the moment? How are they coping with the virus? Are the children happy? Are they learning well?
Well school is pretty normal really; apart from people wearing masks and washing their hands a lot and the windows and doors being open all the time. The bubble system works and in a lot of ways playtimes are better even after we’ve had to abandon the garden and the field.
We are coping well with the virus. We have to remember the routines and stick to our procedures and staff are adhering to them well. All staff can attend a weekly meeting to raise problems so we make sure any wrinkles are ironed out.
We have had and will have people getting tested or self-isolating as instructed by NHS Track and Trace. If we get a positive case we will inform the relevant people (close contacts) in school following the guidance from Public Health England. So, no news is good news.
All the staff feel a bit of anxiety which varies from person to person and from day to day. We are doing our best to look after each other but combined with the normal pressures of the job it can be pretty stressful. I’m not looking for sympathy but parents should be aware as I know many of you also have a lot of stress and anxiety to cope with. We all need to make an extra effort to be patient and kind to one another in these tricky times. And that’s what you’ve all been doing and it is greatly appreciated.
The children are happy but some are also coping with extra stress and anxiety. Lesley is working hard to support these children along with other key staff. We have our Happiness Club Refresher lessons tomorrow which will remind children of the little routines they can follow to reduce their anxiety and feel good.
Learning is going really well, the children have taken on board our “growth mindset” lessons at the start of term and they are showing a lot of courage by being “Have A Go Heroes” in class.
Teachers have assessed children and there has been a significant dip in some of their skills. Of course if the children knew it and could do it before they should quickly be able to pick it up again. The more confident children are doing just that and teachers are focussing on building the confidence of children who are finding catching up more difficult.
Parents can help by reading and talking, reading and talking and sharing books; helping children to use books to boost their imaginations and their vocabularies. All the children have reading books that are the right level for them and that they have chosen hoping to enjoy. We will be asking you to keep a record of reading with your child on Microsoft Teams in the next week or so. This is their most important homework.
Reading along with your child saying the words at the same time (choral reading) or echo reading, when you read it first and they echo you, are great ways to have fun with reading and teach them how to read well at the same time (see video here) When children get to be more fluent the job isn’t finished: try having a talk with them about their book, perhaps reading a chapter with them.
We hope you are all coping with the new lockdown. Please remember we are here to help you as well as the children so if you have any worries or concerns come in and chat to Lesley who can help with all sorts of things.
Mr E :-)