Make school life work as well as possible

Make school life work as well as possible

This section includes the following areas of the Resilience Framework:

Make school work as well as possible

 

Curriculum, Teaching and Learning

There is much focus on the importance of ‘catch up’ in terms of the curriculum following breaks in formal education as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic, but all children will need to have their ‘recovery’ needs addressed before they can learn effectively. The timescale for this will vary from child to child, so a flexible approach to maintaining the recovery approaches in the medium to long term will be important. Many schools in Manchester are already using elements of the Recovery Curriculum. The following video gives more information about this.

The document Compassionate transitions: reconnecting school communities provides an educational psychology-informed evidence base to support your planning.

 

Resources for talking with children about the Coronavirus pandemic

Pandemic Social Story by Carol Gray

An Easy Read version of the social distancing recommendations, produced by Talking Mats (with great visuals): click here to download

Information from the British Psychological Society on Talking to Children about Coronavirus: click here to download

Newsround has a helpful information page with a video and FAQs for children: click this link to access

This short video, also by Newsround, is reassuring for children: click this link to access

Pip’s Guide to Covid19 is an activity book for younger children produced by A Better Start Southend

Don’t Worry, Little Bear! Is a story book written especially to reassure younger children. It is downloadable as an e-picture book

While we can’t hug is a delightful short video story about a Hedgehog and Tortoise who want to give each other a great big hug, but they're not allowed to touch. Definitely one for children of all ages!

The Mighty Creatures Lost Their Crown is a children's story about the virus that uses the idea of Bubbles, and also presents further self-help strategies such as staying healthy.

What is a School Bubble? is a useful Social Story that introduces the idea of (social) Bubbles

The Children’s Guide to Coronavirus has been produced by the Children’s Commissioner. This is probably most useful for children over the age of 5, but there may be some new ideas here.

 

Answering children's questions about Coronavirus

This advice has been provided by the Early Years Alliance (relevant to children of all ages and their teachers):

  • Discuss as a team how you are going to respond to questions and concerns that come directly from the children.
  • Remember that some of your colleagues are likely to have their own questions, too.
  • Make sure that everyone in the team is informed enough to be consistent and accurate in their responses to children and their parents.
  • Don’t force the issue. A circle-time activity focused on coronavirus is going to have little relevance to the majority of children in your care. Don’t overload children with information, keep it relevant, age appropriate and simple.
  • Set the information you give within a context that the children will understand. For example: “It’s a bit like having a cold, but for some people it can make them feel really poorly.”
  • Always acknowledge the interest or question that a child may have expressed, just as you would with any other ‘teachable moment’. A child’s real interest is an opportunity for them to learn.
  • Never dismiss children’s concern. What may seem trivial to you is likely to be a very real worry to a child who, for example, has heard that the virus is dangerous for older people and is frightened that something will happen to their grandma.
  • Do not talk over children’s heads to colleagues about the latest coronavirus updates. We sometimes forget just how much young children are affected by the concerns that adults show around them.