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Weekly learn at home blog

Week 3: Keeping emotional health in mind

Week 3: Keeping emotional health in mind

This article has been written by parent blogger Emma Bradley.

This week has been a rollercoaster of emotions as Erin has been doing great with academic learning but come bedtime, she has had a few wobbles. She has got scared about COVID-19 and had bad thoughts. My ten-year-old hasn’t been outside for walks in 16 days because she has asthma, instead she has just used the garden. Yesterday I took her for a dog walk and it really scared her. She felt people were too close and she just wanted to get home to where she obviously feels safe.

This was an important reminder that our children’s emotional health is just as important as their academic work at this uncertain time. Therefore, I have adapted to make sure that we are doing some mindful activities and talking about feelings too. There are some great books that focus on Well Being and Happiness for children and teenagers including Be Happy Be You, as well as mindful colouring. One of the activities we have done is to start a jar of ideas that we want to do after all this is over. It is good to plan ahead and show our children that this will end. I have also limited the news that Erin is watching and listening. I have actively turned it off when she has come into the room, this is another way to protect her wellbeing. I am making sure the news she reads is age appropriate – use sites like Newsround or newspapers aimed at children.

This week we have continued to do a mix of activities in order to beat the boredom. At the start of the week we decided to write to a friend’s daughter, I grew up with many pen pals but my children never have, so we went old school with letter writing and talked about how to set out letters. It is also lovely to receive a letter in the post too. This is a great activity and one I hope she continues with.

We are still reading Skellig which has provided lots of opportunities for work. We find five words that Erin didn’t know and then write the word out and its meaning. We then find some antonyms and synonyms of that word. This is fantastic for developing vocabulary and practising dictionary work.

One of the themes of the book is evolution. This interested Erin so we have developed some science learning tasks. I made a worksheet where I listed habitats and Erin had to think which animals lived in each habitat and then considered how those animals have adapted for the environment. Next Erin chose one of those animals and created a fact file and wrote an information text which included what the animal eats, how it moves etc. We then found some similes and wrote our own and finished off by drawing with what we think angels look like.

The children have continued to help in the kitchen and this week they made scones which we all enjoyed for an afternoon treat. I have suggested next week we recreate afternoon tea, as we all enjoy that as a treat.

I have also been thinking about the next two weeks as it should be the Easter school holidays now, however we are going to continue with our loose structure because there is nothing else to replace it with. I will take my foot off the pedal slightly, but we will keep doing some school work. I did offer Erin a mufti day last Friday providing she paid me a pound! She refused and told me I wasn’t funny!

Written by Emma Bradley

About Emma

Emma Bradley, a qualified secondary teacher and current primary school governor with many years experience of working in different childcare and education settings. She has three children, the eldest is Chloe a second year university student, a son Dylan who is 16 and just found out his GCSEs are not going ahead and Erin who is 10 and still at primary school.