LEGO have developed a great resource called "Build and Talk" to guide parents and children through tricky conversations while playing with LEGO! Learn more here: https://bit.ly/39tjYN5 First session pdf here: https://bit.ly/3f0LB1a
Resilience: What is it? How do you catch it?
Resilience is the ability to bounce back from adversity and it is only developed through many hours of practice. It starts from the first time a toddler has a fall or rolls over unexpectedly. How we as adults address these instances will be critical to our children's life view. Never is it more true in the current situation.
In good times we all forget to keep developing resilience and focus solely on making life perfect for our children, and sometimes for ourselves. But in more difficult times, a continued focus on developing “grit” in our kids and ourselves has been vital. Developing our confidence that we can get through by bonding together, by helping one another, by focusing on what we can do safely and by having safe behaviours is the key. Focusing on what we can't do will not help; nor will "if only"! As Dr Seuss says in The Lorax “It's not about what it is, it's about what it can become.”
Getting outside is a simple uncomplicated way to develop not only resilience but problem solving and connection with nature. Tonia Gray, an associate professor at the Western Sydney University’s centre for educational research, wrote, “Nature contact plays a crucial role in brain development with one recent study finding cognitive development was promoted in association with outdoor green space and less time on screens. Nature offers a never-ending playground of possibilities with all the resources and facilities needed. But most importantly, it reinforces the message that getting wet, having dirt stains on their clothes and getting their hair messy is good and adds to the fun.”
We are so lucky in our built up urban environment to have both Centennial Park and the beaches on our doorstep all at NO cost. So let's get out and use them. Shortly our cricket nets/soccer courts will also be finished, together with the nature play area for younger children in the forest. I would say we've really missed our working bees and look forward to a time when they can start again if only on a modified basis.
Education week 2020 will be different. Throughout the week we will share our learning with you virtually. Aren’t we lucky to have this option! As always we’re happy to have feedback on what you liked and what you would like to see. Watch out for our whole school version of “We are one”. The audio of choir and string ensemble this week brought tears to my eyes. It was both moving and amazing to listen to our talented students and their inspiring teachers. Video is now being added: no small task to include 970 little faces!
We’ve appreciated your feedback on afternoon arrangements. We’ll continue to monitor this week but it’s always challenging getting so many children off the site in such a short time. In the mornings we’d really appreciate it if you can aim to drop children at Kiss and Go by 8.45am. This will save you and other motorists from the 8.55am chaos. Just set that alarm clock earlier and give children the opportunity to catch up with friends before classes begin. Once again I am soliciting help from Council for changes, probably my 10th effort at doing so over the years. Perhaps if you have ideas you could let them know directly.
P&C at 7pm, on Monday 17th August is being planned with Zoom, actually not such a bad idea for a cold winter night! We would like to present and discuss some changes around how we are planning on improving Randwick students' sense of belonging through the celebration of exceptional work and effort as well as information about the proposed new Sports Shirts for 2021, so you might like to schedule this in ahead of time. Registration and a link will be sent closer to the date.
The Department is also making a shift in the School Planning process with each school asked to develop a four year improvement plan 2021-2024 based around student outcomes and their assessment against the School Excellence Framework. The first of three strategic directions has been set for every school. This is focused on Student Academic Growth and Attainment. We have the opportunity to choose and develop a further two strategic directions through consultation with all stakeholders and based on evidence collected in surveys and P&C discussions. There will be formal processes related to this over Term 3 and 4 but if you have any "big picture" ideas around the two directions I look forward to your input. We will be sharing more information with you as this plan progresses through its draft stages.
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