Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 306 – Sunshine Hopes

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“It never hurts to keep looking for sunshine.”

Eeyore

Oh, perfect, Spidey. And Winnie the Pooh and his friends never fail to provide quotes to make you think.

You’ve probbaly been fooled into thinking that Eeyore is that pessimistic character, who always searches out the doom and gloom, rather than the lighter side of life, but this quote proves otherwise.

A quote filled with hope, which is my word of the year.

It’s a take on the old, every cloud has a silver lining, isn’t it?

If we look hard enough, there is always a positive to pretty much any situation we find ourselves in. Granted, there arae times when it doesn’t seem possible, but when you look back on it, you might realise that glimmer of hope was always there, just waiting for you to realise it, and reach out and grab it.

I think you all pretty much know that I am that eternal optimist, and hope is always inside my heart.

Try and keep it in yours, too.

So… tell me, do you believe in silver linings?

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Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps.   

Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 305 – Pessimistically Optimistic

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“The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty.”

Winston Churchill

Thank you, Spidey, as always, for finding a quote that resonates.

Right now, we are in a situation which breeds pessimism. It’s sometimes easier to look towards the negative, when we’re hurtling downwards, instead of trying to turn our heads upwards, to try and catch a glipmse of the positive.

I was very much finding myself doing the former, this week, after our first week of home learning.

We’ve been battling so hard, what with the Government, and DfE ‘tweaking’ guidance at the drop of a haat, often daily, towarads the end of a day.

Not only does Gaaving Williamson keep using the wrong words to discuss the subject of education, it’s like he’s trying to incite the powers that be, like Ofsted, and parents against schools.

Firstly, when discussing education, he keeps saying schools are ‘closed’ to all except Critical Worker, and Vulnerable children.

WE ARE NOT CLOSED!

Yes, the majority of children are not in the building, but we are working our arses off (mind my language, sorry!) trying to find a way to teach children, online, as well as delivering the same learning to children who are in school.

And the requirements for getting a place in school keep changing, in a way that they might as well have just kept schools open in some areas. Meaning some teachers are running themselves ragged, trying to teach in class, as well as remotely. Thing is, the guidance does actually say that if you can keep your child at home, Critical Worker or not, you should try to. After all, we are trying to stop the spread, not encourage it!

And, secondly, the demand for the amount of remote learning.

Last lockdown was different. We were told to not try and teach lots of new things, but use the opportunity to consolidate previous learning, until June, when some classes did open up again for 6 weeks. This time, they want quality learning, (obviously), in small incremental steps, so children miss minimal learning.

This is the amount we have been told to aim for daily.

  • Three hours, minimum, for Primary KS 1 (but in brackets in the guidance, adjusted to slightly less for the younger ones.)
  • Four hours, minimum, for Primary KS2
  • Five hours minimum for Secondary

Again, woolly advice.

As I read it, set work, including either pre-recorded videos, or live lessons, or links to good quality inputs, created especially for this reason, and activities that will keep a child busy for the times above, and include the reading, creative and physical aspects of the curriculum, too. This is what I explained to the parents I spoke to.

Some schools are especting staff to either be online for the above times, live teaching, or recording and uploading videos, as well as teaching in class. It’s driving school staff crazy!

I spent the whole week calling parents, planning work for the following week, and marking the online work handed in, recording voice notes for all the children’s work, because they are four and five, and can’t read my comments, which I also add, for the parents. Oh, and answering emails from parents, too.

Also, as the team phase leader, I have been organising staff rotas, and work for those who are home, to ensure no staff are in the building, unnecessarily. We are in lockdown, after all.

It stripped me of energy like nothing else I have ever experienced.

And this was without any children in my class. Last week, there were no applications for CWV kids to come in.

Next week, though, I do have some. And I will have to do all of the above, as well…

I’ve said it before, though, online learning for children this age, is almost impossible.

But then, the optimist in me kicked in.

I get to see at least some of my class on Monday. I took great joy in seeing how much some parents did with their children, and how they are using this time to really get to know their kids, and how they learn.

I’ve enjoyed guiding the parents I spoke to, giving them ideas of things they could do, but also ensuring they are aware that a huge part of our curriculum is learning through PLAY.

And on Saturday, as I dragged myself around the supermarket to buy sustenance for the following week, I bumped into a parent and one of my children. The conversation left me with a feeling of warmth. They enquired after my health, and whether I was coping. They said how much the little boy missed school, and thanked me for all the guidance and support provided so far. I was sent on my way with a metaphorical pat on the back!

So, I’ll start another sure-to-be exhausting week, with a bit more of a spring in my step!

So… tell me, are you an optimist or a pessimist?

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Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps.   

Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 304 – Anything Is Possible 2021

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“Once you choose hope, anything is possible.”

Christopher Reeve

Thank you, Spidey, for finding a perfect quote that ties in with my WOTY! (Word Of The Year)

Definitely a motto I choose to live by.

Such truth.

Which is why I never lose hope.

Things may be going crazy around you, but sometimes, you just have to cling to the hope that they might just get better.

Though, I must add, more often than not, it’s not just hope that helps change to occur. You have to be kinda proactive with your actions, too!

So… tell me, are you hopeful for our future?

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Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps.   

Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 303 – Goodbye 2020

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“If you’re brave enough to say goodbye, life will reward you with a new hello.”

Paulo Coehlo

What a quote, Spidey, thank you!

This is the last Serene Spidey of a year that has been far from serene.

One that we will all be thankful to say goodbye too.

But there is plenty to look forward to, as well.

This year has sapped my energy in more ways than I can explain. I lost my writing mojo in August, then being in school, dealing with pandemic issues, as well as teaching… and juggling work and safety, with keeping my own school age children, and their grandparents, safe, too. It’s been too much.

We’ve seen and heard of loved ones being unwell, some losing the battle to stay on this earth with us. It’s been heratbreaking.

I’ve surrounded myself with good books to read, and learned the fun of binge watching series, and surfing various streaming sites for obscure films, when the endless Sky channels are filled with mindless reruns.

But, it’s not all been bad, has it?

For me, I published my first novel! If I can’t remember 2020 fondly for that, it would be extremely sad.

I also got a promotion of sorts, and now am responsible for a team of eight staff in my department, and up t one hundred children aged 3-5… I never thought of myself as management… there is still plenty of the year for us to mess up, but so far, so good…

And, give or take a few hiccups, we have redecorated our first home inside and out, and started the hunt for our forever home!

I’ve hated not being able to choose when I see my family and loved ones, but the connections have definitely been made stronger with those we love, via phone, video-calls, and thoughtful little gifts.

There have even been new additions to the family that we haven’t been able to meet, yet.

And, though this virus is still spreading, mutating, and causing other issues, there is finally a vaccine… That’s good news, too.

And now, we are on the brink of a new year.

It’s not going to be perfect, straight away, but the chance for betterment is there, for us all.

I’m not one for making resolutions.

If I am honest, if there is something that needs doing, I find it’s better to start when the urge hits, but one thing I want to try and do, is to finish my first draft of book two, within the next year. (Sooner, rather than later, hopefully!)

So, if anyone knows where my muse is hiding, you know where to send them!

So… tell me, what are your thoughts on the new year?

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Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps.   

Spidey’s Serene Sunday – Part 302 – Christmas 2020

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Christmas isn’t a parade or a concert, but a piece of home you keep in your heart, wherever you go.”

Donnaa Vanliere

Thank you. Spidey, for finding some words to soothe, at a very tough time.

Earlier, I was wallowing, because it was confirmed that a colleague of mine, that I had contact with, has tested positive. this meant that I was to be in self-isolation for ten days, taking me up to 27th December.

Yup, missing out on Christmas, totally.

But the rest of the family would be okay. They could, at least, go and see the in-laws, and there might have been some semblance of normality.

We were just getting ourselves prepared.

I’d already bought a frozen turkey crown, pigs in blankets, and all the veggies, and crackers, etc, just in case of us being at home, rather than with the extended family. Presents were ready for a doorstep exchange, just in case, too.

And the hope was, that on the 27th December, the last day of the 5 day Christmas Grace that the Government had deemed a possibility for families across England, we could all be together for a short while, at least. (Providing I don’t feel unwell, or end up testing positive myself in the next few days.)

But at 4pm(ish) on Saturday, BoZo and his clueless minions took the decision (which they should have taken ages ago, when the virus numbers started to rise considerably) to cancel the original Christmas plans of three households being able to mix between 23rd and 27th December, and they have also introduced a new Tier 4, (under which we are, now, too, being in Kent).

So from tomorrow, we are effectively in lockdown, again, until at least 30th December. No non-essential shops to be open, no indoor gyms, hairdressers, nail salons, etc. No going into other households, unless you are in a support bubble. Only meeting maximum of one person from another household, outside.

It’s gutting for those who really had their hearts set on seeing their families for the festive period.

I, for one, would usually be seeing my parents for a couple of days. I’ve not seen them since August. But we had already decided that their safety was more important, and that video calls would be the plan for the day.

But I think what is important to remember, is the essence of the quote above.

Christmas is in our hearts. And even if it has to be a quiet one this year, the hope is that all the cancelled joy we have experienced this year, will mean we are safer, healthier and happier, for the next one.

So… tell me, how are you feeling, if the new Christmas plans have affected you?

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Have a peaceful Sunday Peeps.   

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