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23 August Update

23 August, 2021

Kia ora, Aidanfeild whanau

Finding the balance

The weekend has come and gone and I hope you found it manageable.   I hope that you are beginning to find some form of rhythm to the days.  At our place we have adjusted the timing of the usual day and we are beginning to get a routine where there is a set time to wake up and get up, some work, time to relax in some way, time to exercise, time to chat around the dinner table, time to watch a movie or TV and routine bedtimes.  We are attempting to get a balance of screen time and non-screen time.  We are working on the idea of routine stepping us through each day and keeping us well and balanced.  We also remember from last time that having too much news on the TV is not helpful for our young people.  Sometimes the adults keeping up from time to time is more helpful to the wellbeing of our children than having the world’s problems constantly being talked about in the background.  I know that many of our families will remember this learning from last time.  May you lead your young ones through this time well.  

Learning for this week

By now you will have received the work packages for your child for the week.  Sometimes children finish work very quickly because they have rushed it.  Often a teacher in a classroom will look at what a child is working on and start asking questions that extend the thinking of the child, prompts ideas, encourages deeper thinking, greater effort or more focus.  If your child is finishing things quickly you may like to look at the quality of the work and encourage them to go deeper or work with more care.  Think about the presentation, tidiness and layout of work as well as the quality of thinking is a part of a job well done.

Remember, the classroom teacher is your first port of call if you have questions about the work or are unsure.  Once we have a clearer picture of what the rest of the week looks like we will know what the next steps for learning are.  At the moment it is like trying to plan a journey in very thick fog!    

Computer Devices – where are they? 

Thank you to those who have completed the loan agreement for the school devices.  At the moment we have 120 devices going out and there are still some spare.  Please complete the loan agreement ASAP if you would like a device.  The next challenge is getting them to you.  The Ministry of Education (working with Health notices) have said that we are not allowed to have parents come on site to pick up anything while at Level 4.  Couriers are the only option.  However, I have decided to wait until we know what Level we are in for the rest of the week (4pm today) as once the devices are with the courier we have no control over how long they will take to reach you.  If we are in Level 3 we can (under current rules) allow parents on site to pick up and you will have them faster than any other system currently available.  We make haste slowly and I will update this as I am able to.

Can I pick up my child’s things from school?

Under Alert Level 4 the school grounds are off limits to anyone apart from small groups of staff and only then under strict guidelines.  So, no one is able to pick up anything from the school grounds until we are advised otherwise.

Can I use the school playgrounds with my children

No – again, under Alert Level 4, all playgrounds either in or out of school are closed and there should be no use of them or gatherings of people who are in different bubbles.

Need information in another language?

The following link gives the Golden Rules for Alert Level 4 in a range of different languages.  You may know someone for whom this is useful?  Please click on it and decide if it is useful for you

The Golden Rules for Alert Level 4 – you know this but I thought I would include it anyway:

  1. Wear a mask and keep a two-metre distance from others
  2. Wash and sanitise your hands
  3. Stay local and be kind to each other
  4. Scan, scan, scan. Using the NZ COVID Tracer App. Scanning is important for keeping you safe.

Finally, Vaccinations

I know that the topic of vaccinations can be hotly debated and some hold strong views both for and against vaccination.  While being aware of these views and acknowledging that it is a personal choice and a parent choice for children, I would encourage as many people as possible to follow the Health advice and book a COVID vaccination when they are able.  Part of the health-related anxiety created in this global pandemic is based on a fear of the unknown.  What will tomorrow be like?  If I get COVID will I be sicker than most or will it hardly affect me?   What about my family?  From my read of the situation, COVID appears to affect people differently and sometimes with no rhyme or reason.  One way to bring a little more certainty into an uncertain world is to do something to reduce the likelihood of being badly affected by a virus that moves quickly.     It seems like vaccination is one of the very limited ways that we can bring a little more certainty into the picture. 

Grace and peace for this day

Mark Richardson
Virtual Principal