Spring activity ideas for the holidays

Hooray for the holidays! Although it does feel very different.  We all hope that you are staying safe and healthy.   There will be no official classwork set on Google Classrooms, although there may still be the odd fun activity.  We have, however,  put together a whole school Spring learning grid (click the link below) with some ideas to keep your creative juices flowing and for some fun family time if you run out of ideas.

Stay safe

All Loanhead Staff

Loanhead Spring learning grid

Dear Parents…

Dear parents,

You might be inclined to create a minute by minute schedule for your kids. 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’s the thing…

Our kids are just as scared as we are right now. Our kids not only can hear everything that is going on around them, but they feel our constant tension and anxiety. They have never experienced anything like this before. Although the idea of being off of school for weeks sounds awesome, they are probably picturing a fun time like summer break, not the reality of being trapped at home and not seeing their friends.

Over the coming weeks, you will see an increase in behavior issues with your kids. Whether it’s anxiety, or anger, or protest that they can’t do things normally – it will happen. You’ll see more meltdowns, tantrums, and oppositional behavior in the coming weeks. This is normal and expected under these circumstances.

What kids need right now is to feel comforted and loved. To feel like it’s all going to be ok. And that might mean that you tear up your perfect schedule and love on your kids a bit more. Play outside and go on walks. Bake cookies and paint pictures. Play board games and watch movies. Do a science experiment together or find virtual field trips of the zoo. Start a book and read together as a family. Snuggle under warm blankets and do nothing.

Don’t worry about them regressing in school. Every single kid is in this boat and they all will be ok. When we are back in the classroom, we will all course correct and meet them where they are. Teachers are experts at this! Don’t pick fights with your kids because they don’t want to do math. Don’t scream at your kids for not following the schedule. Don’t mandate 2 hours of learning time if they are resisting it.

If I can leave you with one thing, it’s this: at the end of all of this, your kids’ mental health will be more important than their academic skills. And how they felt during this time will stay with them long after the memory of what they did during those weeks is long gone. So keep that in mind, every single day.

Stay safe. x

From all of us in the Loanhead Primary Community

19.3.20 NEW update from Midlothian council regarding school closure

The following statement was sent to schools this evening. At the bottom of the statement are links to parental guidance and advice which will be very useful in this time. We will keep you updated as, and when, we know anything else.

All schools will be closed to Primary Pupils and S1-3 Pupils with the following exceptions:

· Saltersgate School will remain open to support our children with severe and complex needs. The Head Teacher will be in contact with individual families outlining the individual arrangements which will be in place.

· All Secondary Schools will be open to S4-6 Pupils only in order to complete any SQA mandatory coursework and assessments prior to the published deadlines. Please refer to individual High School Websites for further updates. We are planning a phased approach to distance learning however priority will be given to S4-S6 to begin with.

· We are now focussed on planning for the families of staff belonging to the following groups key worker groups: Emergency Services, NHS, Health and Social Care Partnership including Care at Home, Teachers and Council Staff who have requested assistance with Childcare in order to ensure that we deliver critical services. This requested provision will be delivered through 4 secondary and 4 primary schools acting as Hubs. Individual Schools will be in touch with the individual families to alert them to the arrangements which will be put in place.

· Free School Meals: We are currently working with catering services in order to finalise arrangements for the distribution of food for children entitled to free school meals and further information will be communicated as soon as plans have been finalised.

Public health advice and guidance should continue to be followed for staff and pupils with underlying health conditions and self-isolation.

As you will appreciate there is significant planning needed to move this forward and we will continue to update our website to keep you informed.

You can listen to the Deputy First Ministers announcement at this link:
https://news.gov.scot/speeches-and-briefings/statement-on-covid19-managing-the-impacts-on-scottish-education

Andrew Sheridan
Schools Group Manager (ASN & Inclusion)

Guidance for parents and carers in the event of school closure due to Coronavirus

A1 – Midlothian SLT Telephone Helpline info 2020

COVID-19 Information and links for parents/carers

When the school closes on Friday, pupils will be sent home with learning packs for the next week which should be done at home.  The weeks to follow (except for holidays) will involve digital learning via Glow-Google classroom.  Our staff have varied experience with this and we all learn and teach differently both in the classroom and online.  We appreciate your support, patience and understanding during this time.

As well as digital learning passwords, this letter was sent home on 18th March to give information about how to access Glow and Google Classroom within Glow. Digital Learning Letter 18.3.19 Pupils/Parents have teacher emails and can contact their teacher during school hours.  If you have any technical issues or questions please contact Mrs Hinton who will try her very best to help you. k.hinton@mgfl.net

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A list of websites that you can use to support learning can be found in pupil packs or Click here 

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Midlothian Speech & Language Therapy Department offer a weekly telephone help line, for parents and professionals to ring us to discuss any concerns they have about a child’s speech, language and communication skills.

INFO POSTER CLICK HERE

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Primary 3 Announcement (19/3/20)

Hello everyone,

As you may have heard, all schools will be closing after this Friday and online learning will be utilised to help children continue learning. This news is likely to be a source of uncertainty for many, however I would like to assure all of you that I will be doing whatever I can in order to make this period a success. I will personally be prioritising making the online learning experience personal for Primary 3, and I will try and implement little touches to Google Classrooms that reminds P3 children of their classroom. If technology allows it, this will include morning greeting videos that run down the school day and a guitar and singing video a week. I consider these little touches to be of importance as I want everyone in Primary 3 to feel reassured that their teacher is still there for them and that we are still working together as a class socially.

For those of you who had children in school yesterday, you should have received a digital learning bookmark which contains usernames and passwords for SumdogEducation City and Google Classrooms. If your child has not been in school and is unlikely to be before Friday, I can provide these by email.

On Friday, I will be handing out packs for a week of home learning. This will include general Primary 3 tasks for next week while teachers set up for digital learning for the rest of the school year. This will also include one of your children’s jotters for writing in at home.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask at s.mcgaff@mgfl.net.

Thanks a lot,

Mr McGaff

Digital learning update

This week most pupils should bring home their digital learning passwords for Sumdog, Glow and Education City.

In class, pupils will practise logging into these and using them to enhance learning.

Google classroom is an app within Glow Scotland where each class has a ‘google classroom’.  It works best on Google chrome and is accessible on most devices.

There are also tiles on the Glow home page for typing, maths, literacy games and activities too.

Pupils are asked to have a play about with these at home but also have passwords in school bags every day. This will be a learning curve for many and we appreciate your support, patience and cooperation at this time.

Thanks

Mrs Hinton

 

This week’s homework (due Friday 20th March)

Hello everyone, I hope you are all staying well and healthy!

This week’s homework is business as usual. I am now trying your children on non-fiction books at their exact reading level, which may be more challenging than last week’s reading. I would encourage you to discuss the topic of the book with your child and quiz them on any information within the book!

This week’s spelling pattern is <ey>. The words are as follows:

  1. film
  2. kept
  3. key
  4. honey
  5. money
  6. donkey
  7. chimney
  8. journey
  9. thousand
  10. million

Finally, for maths we will be wrapping up time and starting work on ‘chance and uncertainty’. This week’s focus will be discussing the likelihood of events occurring and using the correct language. For example:

‘Rolling a number between 1 and 6 on a dice is certain.

‘Rolling a number higher than 6 is impossible.’

‘The sun coming out today is likely.’

‘A penguin appearing in the playground is very unlikely.’

As soon as your child is familiar with the language we use when discussing chance we can move onto more advanced topics.

Thanks a lot,

Mr McGaff