Some simple tips for your interactions with your children about remote learning, their mental health and wellbeing
- Set a structured time to check in with each child about their wellbeing
- When communicating about wellbeing use statements that show pride, unconditional support and acceptance without judgement
- Practical support, such as provision of materials and resources, a focus on exercise and good nutrition, discussions about learning experience, as well as general encouragement can also enable positive coping approaches in children.
For more tips on self-isolation with children check out the following sites:
One of the most important things parents can do for their children at this time is keep a sense of ordinary routines. This includes maintaining established bedtimes, meal and relaxation times. Students should keep up their responsibilities around the home or maybe take on some additional roles such as preparing dinner. Most importantly, the morning school routine should remain, with students prepared to login for their lesson start time.
Junior School students have a regular timetable for each day, to help them to organise their learning time. Senior School students have been advised to follow their daily timetable. A printed copy of this can be a useful resource.
Students will benefit from starting the day with an expectation for what the day has ahead of them. You can help them by asking them what lessons they have today. You could ask whether they have any Zoom classes or other live lessons.
Checking in on progress during the day and then again at the end of the day can help to keep them on track. Offering regular words of encouragement and praise can help them to maintain their motivation.
Students are encouraged to use their Handbook to record set tasks and reminders. You may use this as a focus for check in discussions. You could ask your child whether they have listed tasks and recommending they cross these off once completed.
Children have limits to their attention span. Junior School learning plans have been designed to provide lesson activities, followed by a short break. Senior students should also take a break between lesson periods.
All students should be using these break times to move around, to especially have time away from their devices. This could be a good opportunity to practise some stretches or engage in short bursts of physical activity.
As many of the students’ regular sporting or leisure activities are on hold at the moment, it is important that they have time for physical activity and fun. Many families are trying to make the best of the current circumstances by walking together, playing board games or learning a new hobby.
Mental Health and Wellbeing
Parents of Senior School students can read this letter from our counselling staff.
Junior School parents can read this letter from our counselling staff.
If you feel stress or anxiety you or your child experience as a result of the coronavirus is impacting on everyday life, a psychologist may be able to help.
Psychologists are highly trained and qualified professionals, skilled in providing effective interventions for a range of mental health concerns, including stress. A psychologist can help you manage your stress and anxiety using techniques based on the best available research.
If you are referred to a psychologist by your GP, you might be eligible for a Medicare rebate. You may also be eligible to receive psychology services via telehealth so that you do not need to travel to see a psychologist. Ask your psychologist or GP for details.
You can access psychological help using the Australia-wide Find a Psychologist service 1800 333 497 or ask your GP or another health professional to refer you.
More info about mental health care plans and rebates can be found on the APS website including a helpful fact sheet titled ‘Maintaining Your Mental Health During Social Isolation‘
Other Sources of help
- Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800
- Lifeline 13 11 14
- Beyondblue 1300 224 636
- Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467
- MensLine Australia 1300 789 978
- Headspace 1800 650 890
- Parentline NSW 1300 1300 52
For emergency situations please call
- Emergency services on 000
- Lifeline 13 11 14 or
- Suicide Call Back Service 1300 659 467
Coping with COVID-19
The Department of Health has developed a collection of resources for the general public, health professionals and industry about coronavirus (COVID-19), COVID-19 support and COVID-19 health alerts.
The World Health Organisation provides information and guidance regarding the current outbreak of coronavirus disease.
St Vincent’s Hospital has an excellent site with some skills to develop to help you cope and communicate, a quiz you could do to assess your level of distress, and some sources of further help.