This week we have started a lunchtime debating club, had a visit from children’s entertainer Barry Peters, taken delivery of two new buddy benches and continued with bike education for year 4. This despite being significantly affected by colds and flu, with some classes only half full, and lots of children (and staff) feeling under the weather.
Thanks to everyone for keeping sick children at home as we try to get on top of the virus spreading further.
We encourage children to come with wet weather gear and we have a big pile of fleece jackets in lost property waiting to be claimed. It would be great if you could label all jackets clearly – an identifying label or badge sewn externally is entirely acceptable and sensible – so that your child can find their jacket, even if someone else is wearing it.
We all know the benefits of unstructured outdoor play for emotional regulation and growth, but for a wide range of reasons children these days are less likely to be playing outside on their bicycles, climbing trees, swinging on swings or hanging on monkey bars, which reduces opportunities to meet their sensory needs. Much of their time is scheduled and structured.
At school we are always reviewing best practice in this area and building our repertoire and resources to provide access to sensory tools which develop our students’ understanding of their needs and the needs of others.
Some of the things our students are already doing are:
- Using sensory tools – each classroom has timers, wheat bags, fidget cubes, kinetic sand and tactile objects.
- Using wobble cushions, and wobbly stools.
- Having lessons outside sometimes, getting up and about and using our outdoor stage.
- Having fruit and water breaks.
- Using the nature play area and kitchen garden and joining gardening club and our seed to plate program.
- Learning about protective behaviours.
- Learning how to self-regulate using the Zones of Regulation program.
- Respecting and learning about our values.
- Playing in unstructured ways.
- Using reflection sheets in a guided, restorative way to restore appropriate behaviour.
Of course the aim is for students to develop the skills to recognise when they are becoming dysregulated or ‘in the yellow or red zone’ as we call it, and to have a number of strategies that they can use to self-regulate or to ‘get back into the green zone’.
Thanks to parents for supporting us if your child has to complete a reflection sheet, and for using it as an opportunity for your child to learn and grow.
One group that is always out and about is our hugely energetic Dads of Richmond Kids. I have put a new page on our website with information about the DoRKS. You can find it here: http://richmondps.wa.edu.au/parents-community/dads-of-richmond-kids/
Class parent reps have done a fantastic job of collecting prizes for the P&C quiz night on Friday. Lots of people are getting excited about their costumes and it looks like it will be a lot of fun. Once again the P&C has given 110% effort to create a brilliant event. Thank you to everyone for supporting it. Just call Lara to reserve your table or seat on 9438 8700.
Thanks to the LIONS Club of East Fremantle which donates some of its monthly Riverside Market profit to Richmond P&C. Their next market is this Sunday 16 June down on the East Fremantle riverside and I encourage everyone to support it.
Finally, I have been invited to go to Geraldton for a few days as part of a DoE school review team and I am looking forward to visiting some schools up there. I will be away next week from Tuesday to Thursday inclusive. In my absence please contact Dave Carder as the principal.