As we enter a new working week, it is hard to believe the situation we all find ourselves in. From today, the school is closed (except to very few children). We are all experiencing feelings of trepidation and fear. However, please remember, we are all in this together. I am so very proud of the whole school community and how they have reacted to this testing time. Friday was a difficult day, however, it was lovely to visit all classrooms and see the children's happy faces, which I will miss over the coming weeks. Thank you to all the parents who offered us words of encouragement, thanks and support last week. Whilst not needed, it was very much appreciated and gave us all a positive boost to get through the week. This might be Coleham’s biggest challenge to date, however, I am sure we will all face this together with kindness and return as an even stronger Coleham community.
By now, you will be coming towards the end of your first day at home with your children, possibly trying to do some home learning. We hope that you received our list of suggested work and activities to try over the next 2 weeks. We tried to be really creative when pulling this together and include some fun activities for your children. However, they are just suggestions. Do not put any pressure on yourselves or your children to complete a certain number of tasks each day. All of our children are hearing everything that is going on around them and they are picking up on our fears and tension, however hard we try to hide it. Like us, they have never experienced anything like this before. I know that many of them were really sad to leave on Friday, worried about not seeing their friends for a long period.
Over the coming weeks, I imagine that you will see a change in behaviour with your children. They may feel angry, anxious, overly emotional and lonely. This is completely normal, given the circumstances and will be happening in all households across the country as we all struggle to journey through this new, uncertain way of life. After Easter, teachers will begin posting daily activities on our online app Seesaw. My advice would be not to put unnecessary pressure upon yourselves as parents to complete a certain number of activities/tasks a day. You will need to pick your battles! Spending quality time together will make all the difference, especially as we all adjust to this new way of life and we will do our absolute best to provide quality care to those children coming into school.
The social distancing is making us all think more creatively. Perhaps you could consider using different apps (e.g. Zoom, FaceTime) to allow your children to communicate with their friends and family. Do remember to check your children's devices regularly and supervise their use of these apps/any websites to ensure that they are staying safe online.
Of course, if you are struggling and need some support from our Pastoral Care Team, your child's class teacher or phase leader, please contact the school office. We will, of course, call you back and do our best to help. Sometimes, a listening ear can make the world of difference.
I have attached a poem that I read over the weekend. I thought it was a lovely way to explain to our young children what is going on in the world around them at the moment. I hope that you find it useful. In these uncertain times, our children need to feel reassured that it's all going to be ok.
I will, of course, maintain regular email contact with you all. In the meantime, I hope that you and your loved ones stay safe and well at this difficult time.
Ms C Jones