What a week Australia has had! With increasing uncertainty about just about everything, life is changing drastically for most Australians. For schools around Australia these changes are immense and teachers and principals are working overtime to do everything they can to support education for our kids. It is not an enviable job – catering to kids who have to attend daily as well as those that can stay home while putting together programs for online learning in case we are not back to school as normal for term 2 and supporting their students who are feeling the uncertainty. Then of course they have their own families to organise and plan for.
It is a confusing time and everyone is worried. Parents have questions and are feeling the pressure of taking on a bigger role in their children’s day to day education which is not easy. It is a good time remember to be kind to each other. Teachers are doing the best they can. I have spoken to many teachers in the last week who are searching for the right resources to keep kids on track with their learning goals. Nothing replaces a classroom teacher but teachers are working to come up with the next best thing – a balanced, engaging program that can be delivered digitally or via take-home packs. Trust your kid’s teachers, be patient and be kind. We are all in this together.
Wingaru Kids is a tool that can support schools in this time. It offers a range of lessons meeting outcomes from all key learning areas and students can access the resources from anywhere. For teachers it offers quality content that can be provided with little preparation and for students it offers engaging content that provides variety in the work that is being sent home. We have been contacted by many parents this week asking how they can access our resources. We are working on how to do this but at this time the best way is to speak to your classroom teacher about organising access through your school. They can set up a free trial and our team are working to set accounts up in just a few hours. We are working with schools to meet their budget so we encourage them to get in touch and see what we can do.
Our educators are also working on resources that we will be sharing on our social media so make sure to follow us on facebook and Instagram so you don’t miss them.
Speaking with many teachers and parents this week, one thing is very clear - we are all worried about how this epidemic affects our kids. Coronavirus is everywhere we turn and kids are hearing so much information that they probably don’t understand. The uncertainty is a cause of worry for many. Mr 8 saw a report on the news about the impact of the virus on Aboriginal people and asked me if he was going to die. The concern in his face was heartbreaking – it’s a level of worry that none of us want our kids to feel. After a yarn with a few kids in my life I realised they were all experiencing a new level of concern and while the specific worries differed, the level of concern was high. I reached out to Nathenya, the director of Kids Steps Speech Pathology, who we provided Cultural Awareness Training to late last year. I explained that some were worried because they heard that old people would die and Aboriginal people were going to be one of the groups most affected and asked her if she had any suggestions on how I could support my kids. Nathenya said some of her clients had expressed similar concerns and gave me some strategies that might help not only my jarjums but many of our young friends out there. I have attached a social story that might be of help to your family. Please use it with your children and share it with other families that you think could do with some support.
I hope your mob stays safe and healthy in this time.
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