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Dear Parents/Carers,

 

I hope that you and your families are all well and taking care of each other.  These are strange and demanding times, and many of us are having to get to grips with ways of working that are new and, sometimes, very challenging.  As before, we continue to work hard to support our school community.

 

As we start our 5th week of partial closure with the extended lockdown period in front of us, I just wanted to remind you that, although we have lots of activities for each year group on the website, we have no expectations that every child should do everything.  Every family has a different set of circumstances, as well as demands on their time and resources.  You are trying to do your best for your children, and that’s the most that anyone can do.

 

Towards the middle of this week we will be sending out joining instructions and codes so that each family can join the Edmodo class accounts for their classes.  We are doing this to try and improve the opportunities for families, children and teachers to interact via the learning platform; learning can be shared and celebrated as a class group rather than having to be forwarded several times.  However, we would ask that you bear with us on this – for some of us it has been a really steep learning curve! J

 

In the meantime, I would like to share the following with you.  It is something that has been shared amongst learning communities, so I cannot claim to have had the inspiration myself, but I do fully echo the sentiment.

 

“Dear All,

 

You might be inclined to create a minute by minute timetable for your children.  You have high hopes of hours of learning, including online activities, science experiments and book reports.  You’ll limit technology until everything is done!  But here is the thing …

 

Our children are just as anxious as we are right now.  Our children not only hear everything that is going on around them, but they feel our constant tension and anxiety as we struggle with changing demands and personal circumstances.  We have never experienced anything like this before, and neither have they.  Although the idea of being off of school for 4 weeks sounds ‘awesome’, our children are probably picturing a fun time like our summer break, not the reality of being at home for long periods of time and not seeing their friends.

 

Over the coming weeks, you may see an increase in behaviour issues with your children.  Whether it’s anxiety or anger, or protests that they can’t do things normally – it is likely to happen.  You may see more meltdowns, tantrums or oppositional behaviour.  This is normal and to be expected under these unprecedented circumstances.  If we are struggling to get to grips with the situation, so are our children. 

 

What your children need right now is to feel comforted and loved.  They need to feel it’s all going to be okay.  That might mean that, on some days, you tear up your perfect timetable and love your children a bit more: bake and paint pictures; play board games and watch movies; do a science experiment together or take virtual trips to the zoo; start a book and read together as a family; or snuggle under a blanket and just do nothing.

 

Don’t ever worry now about them falling behind at school; every single child is in the same boat and they will be okay.  When we are back in the classroom, we will alter course, and meet them where they are; teachers are experts at this!  Don’t get into an argument with your child because they don’t want to do maths.  Don’t cause an upset because they’re not following the timetable.  Do what you can, and then we’ll catch up together.  Some children might enjoy the sense of the familiar and relish doing their learning at home; others will struggle because this type of learning is what we do in school and not at home.  It’s fine.  Just drop things in where you can; do maths through fun activities such as baking, do reading in a different way; follow your child’s interests.

 

If I can leave you with one thing, it’s this: at the end of all of this, your child’s mental health will be more important than their academic skills.  How they felt during this time will stay with them long after the memory of what they did during this time of lockdown.  Try to keep that in mind every single day.”

 

Take care of yourselves and be kind to each other, and please do contact us if there is anything that we can do to support you and your family.

 

Kind regards

 

Mrs Chapman and the Miers Court Team

 

Sunflower Squad Competition

North Kent Mind are now live with their Sunflower Squad Competition - completely free to enter and seeds will be posted out by them next week! 

 

Anyone can enter and sunflowers can be grown inside and outside. North Kent Mind are encouraging people to have a focus for the future, feel connected with the ability to send in photo/video updates or stories for their website and social media, as well as bring some sunshine into their space - If this is something that would be a fun challenge for your families or clients in your network please feel free to pass on the link with details on how to enter: https://northkentmind.co.uk/2020/05/04/sunflower-squad-project/

Hello from Dame Trot!

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Dame Trot wanted to say hello to you all and give you a little riddle... enjoy!!

Hello from Miers Court

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Please see the different year group pages for messages from each year group team!
Week beginning 8th June 2020
Week beginning 11th May 2020

Medway Libraries would like to invite you to join one of their three virtual book clubs, with sessions aimed at young people 8-19 years old. We also have provision for young people aged up to 25 years old with SEN. The titles can be borrowed online for free from our eLibrary (more details below).

 

We will be meeting on Monday 1st June at 12pm to discuss The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris. This session is aimed at 8-12 year olds. To join us, please email emily.maycock@medway.gov.uk.

 

The Lost Words began as a response to the removal of everyday nature words - among them "acorn", "bluebell", "blackberry" and "otter" - from the Oxford Junior Dictionary, because those words were not being used enough by children to merit inclusion. Through acrostic poems, each making up a lost word, this enchanting book joyfully captures the irreplaceable magic of language and nature for all ages.

 

The Lost Words became an instant bestseller, winning and shortlisting for numerous prizes (including the Wainwright Prize 2018, CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2019, Hay Festival Book of the Year 2017, Children's Book of the Year 2018 at the British Book of the Year Awards, and Waterstones Book of the Year), and prompted a surge in Kickstarter campaigns to give free copies to every school in Scotland, Wales and many English counties. It was described as a ‘cultural phenomenon’ in The Guardian, was widely acclaimed as an instant classic, and was shortlisted in 2017 (the year it was published) as one of Britain’s favourite books of all time on the natural world.

 

We are also running two virtual book clubs for teens. To join the sessions below, please email kate.clifford@medway.gov.uk.

 

On Wednesday 17th June at 12pm, we will be discussing The Search for Wondla by Tony DiTerlizzi, a colourful science fiction adventure. Raised by a robot in an underground sanctuary, Eva Nine flees to the surface when her home is destroyed by a marauder. She searches for anyone like her, risking everything to find a place to belong. This session is aimed at 13-16 year olds.

 

On Friday 19th June at 12pm, we will be discussing Divergent by Veronica Roth. A rich, fast-paced dystopian novel, Divergent quickly became a bestseller, with a dedicated fan base to rival The Hunger Games. The novel focuses on the journey of 16 year-old Tris, as she tries to survive and thrive in a dangerous, broken society. The session is aimed at 16-19 year olds.

 

The books are available, online for free, through Medway Libraries’ eLibrary. You can sign up for a free library card here, which also gives you free access to 12,000+ ebooks and eaudiobooks, 1,500+ ecomics, 131 popular magazine titles, and 7000+ newspapers.

 

Stay safe, and happy reading!

 

Many thanks,

 

Emily Maycock | Community Librarian – Young People’s Team | Medway Libraries | Medway Council
01634 335146 | Gillingham Library, 3 High Street, Gillingham, Kent ME7 1BG

Week beginning 20th April 2020
Please see the two documents below which provide useful guidance for parents around the use of social media.

Week beginning 6th April 2020

 

Dear Parents/ Carers

 

One of the things that we regularly revisit as part of our computing lessons at school is e-safety. The documents below are from Think-u-know, which is one of the sites we would use as part of our e-safety teaching at home. As many children will now be accessing more of their learning via the Internet, we thought it would be useful to share these resources with you. We hope you find them useful.

 

Regards

Mrs Chapman and the Miers Court Team.

I would like to let you know about a  free information book explaining the coronavirus to children which has been released today. It has been illustrated by Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler.

 

https://nosycrow.com/blog/released-today-free-information-book-explaining-coronavirus-children-illustrated-gruffalo-illustrator-axel-scheffler

Dear Parents

We have received the following information from New Generation Sports:

 

In order to help to keep parents and children fit and active, we have created a YouTube channel which is free and safe for everyone to access. On this channel (link provided below) children, parents and teachers can find P.E lessons, fun games and fitness sessions that can be done all at home to use whilst not at school. 

 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuwtC6kvO9LkmCO95AqokQg

 

By subscribing to the channel, subscribers will receive live notifications when we upload our daily PE Game/lesson. We also are uploading 2 fitness sessions, that can be adapted for all fitness levels, every Tuesday & Thursday.

www.newgenerationsports.online

 

Regards

Mrs Chapman and the Miers Court Primary Team

Week beginning 30th March 2020
Week beginning 23rd March 2020

It has been brought to my attention that Chester Zoo is hosting an all-day live virtual tour with hourly slots featuring a range of different animals.

 

This a fantastic opportunity for children to observe and learn about a number of animals.

 

Just some of the animals featured will be

 

  • Red pandas at 10am
  • Rothschild's giraffes at 11am
  • Asian elephants at midday
  • Butterflies at 1pm

 

Then you can catch up with the

 

  • Sun bears at 2pm,
  • Sumatran tigers at 2.30pm
  • Humboldt penguins at 2.45pm
  • The aquarium at 4pm.

 

That's a full day to spend with the animals, and although it's possible the running order might be subject to some slight changes, zoo staff promise there'll be more surprises throughout the day.

 

Take a look at the zoo's Facebook page for details of how to tune in to the virtual tour.

Here is a link to the Hamilton site where the resources are all free, they include texts and activities for English and maths.

 

https://www.hamilton-trust.org.uk/blog/learning-home-packs/

Many thanks to the author, Molly Watts, for sharing this with the community:

 

Here is a little bit of everything for maths, reading and handwriting - easy to access and use - https://shop.scholastic.co.uk/homelearning
Week beginning 16th March 2020

 

BBC Newsround

 

 

Parents:

Dr X and Dr Chris video on Corona Questions for young people dispelling any myths or fears

https://www.bbc.co.uk/newsround/51861090

Child mind.org

 

 

Parents:

Navigating conversations tips for parents / carers

https://childmind.org/article/talking-to-kids-about-the-coronavirus/

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WhVad8ToCiU&feature=youtu.be

 

BBC

 

 

Parents:

advice and information about the COVID 19

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-51734855

 

The Guardian

 

Parents:

Tips on how to deal with the media and potential self-isolation

 

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/13/the-family-lockdown-guide-how-to-emotionally-prepare-for-coronavirus-quarantine

Young Minds

Parents:

Emotional health and wellbeing online resources for various mental health needs

 

https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/for-parents/parents-survival-guide/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIkKO8gZ2h6AIVi7TtCh1E2Qn1EAAYAiAAEgJghvD_BwE

Childline

Parents:

Activities for mindfulness & creating calmness in the home

https://www.childline.org.uk/toolbox/calm-zone/

Blissfulkids.com

Parents:

family mindful games at zero cost

 

https://blissfulkids.com/mindful-games-mindfulness-for-kids-and-teens/

           

Organisation/

Agency

 

Description of Resource

Where to Find It

PSHE Association

 

 
   

 

 

 

 

 

Lots of free and some member resources that are suitable for home learning.

https://www.pshe-association.org.uk/curriculum-and-resources

EC Resources - TES

 

 
   

 

 

 

Collection of free PSHE workbooks for the new 2020 Guidelines, suitable for home learning.

 

https://www.tes.com/teaching-resource/pshe-home-learning-pack-12268315

TES

 

 
   

 

 

 

PSHE / SMSC / Citizenship / English / History - 30 Page Student Activity Pack.

 

https://www.tes.com/teaching-resource/covid-19-home-learning-pack-coronavirus-12267191

Education Freedom

 

 
   

 

 

 

 

Free resources from a number of organisations including British Heart Foundation, British Legion and Postal Museum.

 

https://educationalfreedom.org.uk/free-resources/

Open Learn

 

 
   

 

 

 

 

 

Lots of fantastic free resources for children aged 13 and over.

 

 

 

https://www.open.edu/openlearn/free-courses/full-catalogue

DUOLINGO

 

 
   

 

 

 

 

 

A free to access learn a language site. Learn 30+ languages online with bite-size lessons based on science.

 

https://www.duolingo.com/

Home Education Resources

 

 
   

 

 

 

 

 

A number of recommended home education websites/resources. Many of them are free.

https://www.home-education.org.uk/resources-educational.htm

Twinkl

 

 

 

 

 

Lots of free to download resource packs.

https://www.twinkl.co.uk/resource/t-he-770-free-home-education-resources-sample-pack

Art Hub for Kids

 

 
   

 

 

 

Lots of videos lessons for making an array of art projects.

 

 

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5XMF3Inoi8R9nSI8ChOsdQ

Khan Academy

 

 
   

 

 

 

 

 

Free science and Humanities resources and lesson plans.

https://www.khanacademy.org/science

 

 

BBC Bitesize

 

 

 

 

Lots of free videos and helpful topics on a number of topics.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize

Quizlet

 

 
   

 

 

 

 

Free education resources for KS1 – KS4.

https://quizlet.com/en-gb

Oxford Owl

 

 
   

 

 

 

 

 

Educational resources and free eBooks to support children's learning at primary school and at home, from Oxford University Press.

 

https://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/

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