Information for Families: 5.2.21
I hope you are well and have been able to think about your own mental health and well-being this week, as well as your children’s. Too many times we neglect our mental health until it is a problem. Please think about how you can take some time to invest in yourself, it is really hard to support your family if you are not feeling strong.
If you’re finding it difficult, remind yourself you’re human and no-one gets it right all the time. Be kind to yourself – the world and you, need more kindness!
Support for Parents and Carers
Our first support coffee morning went well this week, with people finding it really helpful just to talk and know that others are feeling the same. In response to the feedback we will be offering a regular weekly session and choosing themes for each meeting. More information next week.
Good news everyone, the infection rate continues to fall and is now at 289 in Lewisham, just below the London wide figure. This has come down dramatically, but it needs to come down even more. What we are all doing is working, so please hang in there, push through and let’s see if we can get it low enough to be able to return on 8th March and keep school open. We all know our children need to be in school, let’s help make it happen!
As I explained last week, in response to your feedback, we have now changed Friday afternoons. We are now providing the children with our whole school assembly to watch and the opportunity to catch up on any learning that they want to return to or follow their own interests. This week children may like to use this time to try some of the ‘Express Yourself’ ideas that are included in the assembly. The link and details for Friday Assembly have been sent to parents by email.
Motivating your child(ren)
We are all fatigued by the present situation and as we approach half term, many children are struggling to keep up their enthusiasm. If you’re finding it difficult to keep your child motivated and finish work to an appropriate standard, you are not alone.
Here are a few ideas that might help:
- Talk to your child about it and decide together on what you will try next week. Getting children’s ‘buy in’ by including them in the plan can really help.
- Agree a timetable which chunks up the learning.
- If your child spends ages on certain learning, agree that when the time is up, the learning is done and whatever has been accomplished is posted.
- Use a timer – the day/task can feel endless without it.
- Have a menu of options that your child(ren) can be chose from during breaks e.g. lego, drawing, dancing to music.
- Use Friday afternoons as ‘Golden Time’ – every day an agreed target (keep it specific) is achieved earns 15 mins of free time on Friday afternoon.
- Agree a target number and every time your child has tried hard, they earn a sticker or marble in a jar. Make sure it’s achievable – just a bit more than what you are normally getting and build from there. When the set number is achieved they chose a treat (agreed in advance) e.g. they choose movie or takeaway or decide on which park you visit.
Different things will work with different children. If in doubt, ask your child what they think would help them. Alternatively, we are here to discuss strategies – just give us a call on 020 8691 0611.
Ladywell Children’s Centre continues to offer a range of parenting support, only virtually. There are a range of sessions that focus on topics from bedtime routines, aggression from children at home and positive parenting skills. More information can be found at:
You can contact them to find out more at: 07377 724 243 or email at: firstname.lastname@example.org .
Even if a course has already started, you can discuss issues and find out when the next course will begin.
Whilst the government is not providing FSM vouchers over half-term. Lewisham Council is using some of their funding to provide these for Lewisham families. Because these are being funded from an alternative source, we are unable to provide the term-time Edenred vouchers. We will therefore be providing Asda vouchers, which will be available to be collected from school from Wednesday next week.
As part of RSBP Big Garden Birdwatch, Matthew Schellhorn (dad of two boys in Year 5 and Year 2), put an appearance he made on BBC Radio 3 playing a piece called “Robin” by French 20th-century composer, Olivier Messiaen on social media last week. Myatt Garden were happy to help when he was looking for some images to add to a recording. You can enjoy it too at: https://youtu.be/T322pH0-pkg
Children’s Mental Health Week
I hope you have found some of the tips and this year’s focus on ‘Express Yourself’ helpful.
5 tips for looking after your children’s well-being
- “Teach them to be themselves” – Helping children to realise their strengths is a great way to build their confidence. Encourage children to notice and appreciate their own strengths, and those of others too.
- “Be grateful”- Help children to bring attention to what’s working well in their life. To develop these skills, you can use techniques such as starting a journal, have a gratitude list on the fridge or a discussion at breakfast/dinner.
- “Help them be more mindful” – A way in which we can help our children develop these skills is drawing for 10 minutes. Simply set a timer for 15 minutes and ask your child to draw something they can see. This activity isn’t about what the child decides to draw, it’s about whether they are able to focus on the activity and bring their attention back if they get distracted.
- “Be kind” – There are thousands of ways children and adults can show kindness every day, it can be fun to sometimes turn these small acts into every day rituals.
- “Teach them the importance of resilience” – One way to build resilience in children is to help them develop a growth mind-set. Children with a strong mind-set are more likely to try again when they fail, and also to attempt to learn how they can improve. There re plenty of resources online or you could revisit our assembly from the beginning of term.
Live Zoom Assemblies
We really value these sessions each week – they are an important opportunity for children to see their friends. The times and links stay the same every week for each year group.
The link and details have been emailed to parents.
A polite reminder that:
- an adult should be present/in the vicinity during these sessions;
- your child should be appropriately dressed, sitting up and not eating their breakfast/snacks;
- Children should be respectful to the audience/speaker and be discouraged from playing with features, pets, etc. during sessions.
One week to go until half-term, we’ve got this!
Come on Team Myatt!!!