Dear Parents and Carers,
Once again, I am writing to you to thank you for all the hard work and support that you are putting in to educating your children at home. I know that this has not been easy, and I hope that you have found the resources and support provided by the school helpful. I have included some updates below, please read and contact the school if you have any questions. I would like to ask you to continue to keep our whole community in your thoughts and prayers, and to continue to support each other as I know you have been doing. I am very aware that anxiety levels have been raised by the speculation in the media about when schools are likely to return. Please be assured that we have started to make some very considered plans about what this might look like for SJF and we will be involving staff, governors, students and parents in that planning. My first consideration will always be to ensure your children’s health and safety as we move through the next few months. God Bless,
KEEPING IN TOUCH
This week, staff have been releasing video messages to share with our students. Our chaplain, Miss Coleman, has offered a prayer and reflection every day, and Heads of Year have shared their experiences and insights. We have already had many positive comments from our students, and some have even submitted their own videos as replies! If you haven’t already, I would suggest that you have a look using the link below. We are one community, all experiencing similar challenges and we wanted to share some of our experiences to help our students, staff, parents and carers.
These videos will continue over the coming days, but we would also like to hear from you. If you would be prepared to share photos or short videos (30 seconds or less) of you and your children’s life during lockdown, please submit this to Miss Walker using firstname.lastname@example.org.
These videos could involve sporting activities, arts and crafts, cooking, or even as Mrs Bailey modelled on her video, pets! Please be aware that we may share these videos and photos with our community using our Twitter page, Facebook page or website. Please only submit photos or videos if you consent to them being shared in this way.
With the increased use of the internet at present, we thought it may be helpful to remind parents of a few tips for monitoring your children’s activity:
- Ensure that all privacy settings on social media accounts are set to their highest level. This means that anything posted can only be viewed by accepted contacts. All social media platforms have a help menu to guide you through this process. The following link takes you through the process for a number of the more widely used
Continue to speak to your children about their use of the internet and remind them that they can speak to you or another trusted adult if they are worried about anything they have seen or read.
- Regular monitoring of their social media usage is advised. If you come across any posts, messages or images that concern you, the following link will provide you with guidance on how and where to report your concern: https://parentinfo.org/article/child–online–safetyduring–lockdown–where–to–report
- Finally, please remind your children that it is their responsibility to ensure that they are being polite, considerate and respectful towards others when messaging and posting on their social media accounts – in a world where you can be anything, be kind.
Below are some further links that offer support and guidance on keeping your children safe online:
We would also like to remind you that, used correctly, the internet is a safe and valuable tool to help children keep in contact with friends and relatives and continue to complete learning tasks from home.
NHS & KEYWORKER CARDS
Throughout this challenging time, the hard work and dedication of our NHS workers has been at the forefront of our thoughts. With this in mind, we have set a voluntary task on Show My Homework for students to design a card or letter to express their thanks to our NHS workers. Details of what they need to do, and how to submit this, are on Show My Homework and the school will make sure that they are passed on to NHS workers both in Medway and London Hospitals.
SHOW MY HOMEWORK
Thank you for your continued support of the school and the encouragement you have given your children with the work that is being set on Show My Homework (SMHW). Supporting learning at home is not easy and the way that our students have engaged with it so far has been very positive. I’ve included a reminder about the way the work is being set below.
As I mentioned in a previous email, teachers are setting an equivalent amount of work to the number of lessons they would normally teach. E.g. If your child has three science lessons a week, they will receive three hours of science work per week.
Teachers will be assessing a piece of work every four to six lessons. This means that some work will not need to be submitted. The pieces of work that will need to be submitted will be clearly labelled. Feedback for these pieces of work might come in the form of comments from the teacher, or in some cases will be automatically marked by the SMHW software (or other platforms like ‘educake’ or ‘Seneca’ and wrong answers identified to students.
As of this week the live learning lessons have been extended to all year groups. If a teacher is scheduling a live learning session they will send an email to your child’s school email as well as posting a notification on SMHW. Please do encourage your child to check their emails and look out for these opportunities.
The live learning sessions can be accessed using a computer, tablet or smartphone. No extra equipment is required. If your child is uncomfortable sharing live video of themselves, they can disable the video function or put in a different background. Instructions for doing this have been shared using your child’s school email address.
I would like to remind you that not all teachers will have the necessary IT equipment at home to carry out these sessions, so these will not be available from every teacher or every subject.
This week I took part in a webinar where a counsellor named Jo Morton- Brown was a contributor. I was very impressed with the advice and guidance she was able to provide, and wanted to point you in the direction of her You-Tube channel. The guidance is mainly aimed at supporting the wellbeing and mental health of young people aged 11-19 during the lockdown period. Some of it is aimed at school staff, but the vast majority of it is applicable to parents and carers as well.
STUDENT AND PARENT QUIZ
I hope you enjoyed last week’s quiz. You can check your answers below.
|English||Who lived at Privet Drive?||Harry Potter
(and/or the Dursleys)
|Maths||How many sides does a Heptadecagon have?||17|
|Science||What is the first element in the periodic table?||Hydrogen (H)|
|RE||Who was Bishop of Rochester and regularly heard Katherine of Aragon’s (Henry VIIIs first wife) confession?||St. John Fisher|
|Geography||What geographical feature could be called an “oxbow”||A lake|
|History||VE day is on the 7th May but on what date did the second world begin for Great Britain.||3rd September 1939|
|Art||Which impressionist famously painted waterlilies?
|French||What does the phrase “C’est la vie” mean?
|Latin||“Caecilius est in horto” What does this phrase tell you about where Caecilius is?||Caecilius is in the garden|
|DT||Which famous Victorian engineer designed the Clifton suspension bridge in Bristol?
|PE||Who is the manager of Gillingham Football Club||Steve Evans|
|Computing||What is the name of the code by which computers store information using only ‘1’s and ‘0’s||Binary Code|