Today we took time out to reflect with the children about the year that is past. A year when our lives were transformed by the impact of the Corona Virus.
We discussed how our children and families were impacted by Covid-19. The closing of shops and restaurants, churches, youth organisations, cinemas, sports' events and of course school. We remembered the events they missed at school and the birthday parties that were perhaps less extravagant than in previous years. Our children lost out on a lot.
On the other hand, we reminded them of the positive aspects of lockdown; the new skills they learned at home, the family zoom meetings, the quizzes and the way in which they kept going and didn't give up. Our children faced two lengthy stretches of remote learning and together with the support of their mums and dads, grandparents and older siblings, kept their learning going.
We reminded them of the amazing work of our NHS staff and how we clapped to show how much we appreciated their efforts. And of course, their teachers and all of our keyworkers who kept things going throughout the year.
We remembered how our community pulled together during lockdown, looking after folk who were shielding or ill or unable to go to the grocery store or pharmacy.
We noted how we have all had to change our behaviours, from handwashing to catching sneezes, social distancing to staying in bubbles and not meeting up with friends and family.
We reminded the children that this has been an unusual time for everyone and how we have all been touched by Covid. Some adults caught Covid and had minor problems, some became really sick and a small number died as a result. We recognise that our children have not been sheltered from this information; they have followed this story, day-to-day. We also reminded them of the good news that very few children are affected by Covid, which is really quite remarkable.
We also celebrated the hope which falling the the roll-out of the vaccine has brought. We were therefore able to look forward with the children to brighter and better days ahead
and to a return to a little more normality, step by step, week-by-week.
It has been so good to see our classrooms filled again, to hear the sound of joyful exuberance echo around our playgrounds and to see little friendships revisited.
Long may this wave of positivity and hope continue.