After the Government announcement last week, parents are probably wanting information about how we intend to re-open. As you can imagine it is a very complicated process and needs lots of careful thought and planning. What we do know is it will not be possible to open on the 1st June due to staffing and organisation, we also know school is in no way going to be the same, so children will have to be part time, days will be shorter as there will be no lunch time play and school will start and finish at different times for different year groups. What we also know is that parents can choose not to send their child back before the summer holidays and there will be no action taken against those that do not come back, but we will want to know they are safe. Your biggest question you will be asking yourselves is – is it safe for your child to come back? You will have to answer that for yourself but if you are asking my own personal opinion, I do not consider it safe for anyone to congregate in groups at the moment. Obviously we will have to follow Govt. direction and begin to open the school and we will make it as safe as we can, but ultimately bringing people together in large groups in enclosed spaces at this moment in time is likely to increase infection not decrease it, so it is a risk you will have to decide whether you want to take at the moment. Once a plan has been completed we will send a letter out to all parents NEXT WEEK detailing the first steps we will take to begin to bring the children back to school. Parents need to understand the safety of children and staff comes first and this process will take some time. We will continue to provide home schooling materials on this website until the end of the summer term for children who want to stay safe at home. Mrs Fearns
Message from Nuno in Reception
Hello everyone! Here is another start to a week. We are all missing you and we know the children are missing us and each other. Remember we are staying at home to keep not only ourselves safe but everyone else too. If any children would like to share pictures, work they have done or messages with the rest of the school, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will try and put them on the website.
Nuno from Reception is missing you all and has sent messages of thanks to the school for looking after the key worker and vulnerable children and to all of the other key workers keeping our country going, see his drawings below. Mrs Fearns
A book for children to explain Corona Virus
Thank you to all of the parents who are home schooling – you are all doing a great job and the staff and I appreciate your efforts to keep children learning in this difficult time.
We are all missing you and the joy you bring to us every day but we all know we have to keep on doing this in order to keep all of us safe. Sadly this virus is amongst our community and our thoughts and prayers are with those families affected by it.
It is very important as weeks go by and our patience is tested to remember we are all at home because it is really dangerous and life threatening to be with other people or in public places at the moment. So, be strong and stay safe at home.
Remember to look at your child’s class page every day for the new school work that is being posted there.
Also, remember the advice I gave you before the holidays – set up a routine for each day Monday to Friday – set school work hours, get the children to wear uniform if it helps to get them into learning mode, then when they finish the work time they can change out of uniform so that it is clear when it is work time and when it is not.
I have been sent this book which you could share with your children to explain what the virus is and why everything is so different.
Also remember you have our phone numbers if you feel you need help with anything, please ring us, or even if you are feeling down and just need a chat, we are still here for you all with support and advice.
Free School Meal Vouchers
Please be assured all of those entitled to vouchers have been registered and ordered. If you have no email they are being posted out to you tomorrow. There are lots of problems with the EdenRed system which are out of our control. School staff are working hard on resolving all of the problems – please be patient you will get your vouchers eventually. Please remember this is an extra payment from the Government that you would not normally have, so it is an extra that other families on low incomes are not getting! Some people have received their vouchers but if you have not, it does not mean that you won’t be getting them, you will, but there are millions of families in the system across the country and we just have to wait for the system to cope.
Welcome Back to the Summer Term 2020
We are now back in business supporting the learning of our children at home. We hope you were able to have some down time over the last week or so and a rest from home schooling activities. The teachers have posted new learning for you all on your child’s class pages and will continue to do so Monday to Friday during normal term time.
On a different matter if you are registered for Free School Meals with the Government (unfortunately this is not all of Reception and Years 1 & 2) then you will at some point be getting vouchers. You will need to be patient as the system is taking some time, but be assured you have all been registered and school staff are doing their best to try and sort it all out. If you do not have an email your vouchers will be posted to you. Please do not telephone EdenRed the company as calls are being charged at an expensive rate.
Thursday’s Message from Mrs Fearns
Today’s top tip for behaviour management:
Consistency is the absolute key………
You need to be consistent in your approach – in other words in every situation you do the same so there is no difference. No must mean NO! It is very tempting when the kids are driving you up the wall that you say NO and then for a quiet life you give in and a no becomes a yes or worse you bribe them. Then they have you! Because they have now learnt if they persist with the behaviour e.g. screaming, tantrums or whining etc. then eventually they know they can wear you down and get what they want or even a treat for their bad behaviour.
So, have routines and stick to them, even routines for daily everyday life not just home schooling.
Approach every situation in the same way – and when you say no stick to it, however hard and draining it is. Never give in and NEVER BRIBE the children with “if you’re good I’ll give you……/or you can do……… etc”. Eventually by sticking to your message the children will learn that when you say no or stop you mean it.
BE CONSISTENT – REACT THE SAME EVERY DAY to the situation, it will take time maybe even a couple of weeks but believe me it works but it can feel hard going in the first instance!
Although the school remains open for critical workers we are following the Term Time Dates for staff so that they get a break from continually thinking about school. So teachers will not be posting work from today until Monday 20th April when they will begin again. I also will not post a message again until April 20th as I also need a rest – it has been a very stressful time for all of us!!
This means the children are also on holiday from today and so you do not need to continue struggling with school work until we start again on Monday 20th – so we can all have a rest and recharge our batteries.
CONTACT UNTIL 20th April
You have all been sent my phone number and that of Mrs Floate and Miss McGrath so you can continue to contact us over the Easter period between 9 and 3pm. I will text you all the numbers again tonight – please keep them safe if you need them.
Wednesday’s Message from Mrs Fearns
TOP TIPS TO SURVIVE YOUR CHILDREN IN ISOLATION
Some of you have said the behaviour of the children is becoming difficult and you need some help.
I am going to share some of a teacher’s magic to try and help you!
Some of our secret tips for you:
Children very quickly work out your weak points and when they want to they will push your buttons to get a reaction and they do not care if it is a negative one or a positive one – so they will push and push until you react.
The trick to behaviour management is the control you as the adult have over your reaction to having your buttons pushed or your patience running out. It is a natural human reaction to shout & scream but that is not the reaction that will bring calm to the household.
Children react as mirrors whatever your behaviour is they will reflect it back to you. If you shout and scream they will do the same. So the trick for today is to control your own feelings and reactions. The louder and more they shout and go on, your job is to make your reaction calmer and calmer and your voice quieter and quieter, at some point they will not be able to hear you and so they will start to strain to hear what you are saying and eventually this will calm the situation.
If your child is really high with emotion then give an assertive message such as “I know you’re really upset about…… right now. I’m going to leave you now for a few minutes, when I come back we will talk about it”. Then leave the room for 5 minutes and return calmly, sit down so you are at their level and calmly talk. If they are still elevated then repeat the process.
Give this a go – you need to stick to it, don’t give in to temptation to react – focus on your reactions NOT the child’s, think about what you are doing. Calm yourself (even if you are raging inside) use a calm voice, walk away for a few minutes if either you or your child need a breathing space before dealing with the situation.
Behaviour management takes time to get control it will not be instant, be patient with yourself.
Tuesday’s Message from Mrs Fearns
Good afternoon everyone! I hope that you all keeping safe and well.
FREE SCHOOL MEALS NEWS – the Government are organising supermarket vouchers for the children entitled to free school meals. You have to be registered and approved on the Government website to get them. Many of you who have lost your jobs in this crisis may now be entitled to get free school meals. Go to the website to apply:
We will be in touch with anyone registered with the Government when we know how to operate the system. The voucher scheme will not operate over the Easter Holidays but we hope to be getting vouchers out to families during the week that starts Monday 20th April. If you are entitled to Free School Meals please send your email address if you have one together with your family name to email@example.com.
TOP TIPS ON HOW TO SURVIVE YOUR CHILDREN AT HOME:
I will be sharing some strategies to help parents cope with home schooling over the coming weeks.
It is really important that you put routines in place so that the days are structured for both the children and adults alike. Children like structure and boundaries and life will be easier for you all if you do that.
I suggest you draw up a timetable if you haven’t already done one and follow it with clear times to do certain things. I would suggest something like this…..
8-8.30 Washed and dressed. Cleaning teeth and brushing hair. The children could put their uniform on for school days so that they know that time is different to other time.
9-9.30 Join in the Joe Wickes You Tube daily workout.
9.30-10.30 Get work from the school website on your child’s class pages.
10.30-11 Children can go off to play in their rooms or in the yard or garden. With a snack.
11-12 Write or tell a story or a report or a diary etc.
12-12.15 Reading to an adult
12.15 – 1.15 Lunch and a break in their room/garden.
1.15-2.15 Get work from the school website on your child’s class pages.
2.15 Take their uniform off and school has finished.
The day then has structure, the children feel there is a difference to the different parts of the day and know when it is free time to play and when it is school time and you have successfully made it through another lock down day. This might sound a bit mad, but give it a go, it might be just what you need if you are struggling with the children at home.
Message from Mrs Fearns
Good morning parents & children of St George’s. As we start the second week of Lock Down I just wanted to make contact with you to let you know that school has not completely abandoned you and we have all been very busy working behind the scenes to try and get some order in the chaos that is all around us.
Children should be accessing work daily on their class pages and so we are continuing with learning as best we can.
We ask that parents continue to read on a daily basis and even if you finish the books you have at home keep re-reading them, it is the daily practice that is important, not so much what they are reading.
School closed to the majority of children very quickly and we had no prior warning that we would be in lock down that quickly. We had an army of people trying to get learning packs together and out to the children and we delivered them to anyone who was not in the previous week on last Monday & Tuesday. Unfortunately if you were not in on those days at the time we visited then you did not get your pack.
We also delivered vouchers to the children who are registered for Free School Meals. Unfortunately this does not include the whole of Reception, Year 1 or Year 2 as this is not the Government Universal Meals. Free School Meals means the children who were registered because of financial disadvantage prior to the Corona crisis. These children will get either vouchers or food parcels over the coming weeks, but will not get them for the planned Easter Holidays between the 2nd & 19th April.
The school has been working hard with the County Council and there will be a local hub set up in great Yarmouth to help people who cannot get food or medicines if they are self-isolating and for any families that are struggling due to now not working because of the crisis. We will give you details of the number as soon as we have them.
We sent out a text last week with telephone numbers of Mrs Floate, Miss McGrath and Mrs Fearns for you to use if you need help in some way. These are switched on Monday to Friday 9-3.
I will be adding a daily message for you on this page – so please come back and visit soon.
Keep safe everyone, we can all get through this if we work together and follow the rules.