Children are back (Part Two)




Children are back! (Part two)


It has been ten days since the children have gone back to school. Children across the country everywhere were getting back to 'normal' education. 8:30-15:30. The children, as a whole, did very well getting in back into the school structure. In part one of this blog, I spoke about how resilient our children and young people are.


In this segment of my blog, I wanted to speak about my mentees and my school role. The children I see for mentoring find school difficult for a variety of different reasons. For the first few days, all my mentees engaged with the teaching, socialising with peers respectfully and just seemed to be enjoying their new school life. Then Thursday came. Tiredness kicked in. Old habits came out, and they started to become unsettled. Late last week, I was supporting two of the children I mentor. These two children had daily mentoring/tutoring from me during the lockdown. We have built a robust, purposeful relationship, and both tend to follow the instructions I give them. That daily work during lockdown via video calls told my mentee that I am here to support them. When I take them out for sessions, we work on strategies to help them in class. I find that these children do not yet have the stamina to learn for an entire school day. The techniques help them build stamina.


As part of my school role, I support PPA (planning, preparation and assessment) cover. Teachers get allocated time to do this often; it is every week. PPA cover gives me the chance to see first hand how well children are settling in. I enjoy this part of my role as I see how children engage with education as a class rather than just one pupil. All of my PPA cover this time is in KS1. As someone who started working in high schools then moved to primary, I naturally go to Upper Ket Stage Two. I enjoy KS1; however, I miss the conversations and reflection time I have with the older children.


I am looking forward to learning new skills working with KS1 children. I hope these skills will help me write resources for KS1. At present, our resources are for KS2 and KS3.

In every class I went into last week, the children were exceptional. I was so impressed with their behaviour, their attitude towards learning and their kindness to each other. Each room was innocent and happy to be in school.


The last thought I would like to give you is this one. The school I work with asked the staff to complete a Well Being questionnaire. One of the questions was, "How are you feeling after week one of the full re-opening of school?" My first thought was I am happy to have the children back. I then reflected on the question. How am I doing? Me? Well, I am tired after 10 days. I have gone from mostly screen time and having online mentoring sessions for the best part of a year to moving around supporting children (socially distanced, of course). However, most nights now I come back drained. This is where we need to be careful to make sure you are being energised daily to stay on top of your game. If you do not, you all know what can happen.


I can only write from my own experience, and there may be other schools and organizations with different experiences.


Thanks for reading.


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