FREE Healthier Gaming and Screentime Webinar for Families

Anglicare Victoria are working in partnership with Gamblers Help to run a free session to help parents understand the online world their children are involved in and to consider strategies to support their online use.

There are two sessions available – you only need to book in to one.

Click on the link below to access the flyer:

I hope you enjoy the session. Please let us know if you attend and if you found it useful.

– Mrs Rust 🙂

R U OK? Day

R U OK? Day is tomorrow, Thursday 10 September 2020. It is a national day of action when we remind Australians that every day is the day to ask, “Are you OK?” if someone in your world is struggling with life’s ups and downs.

The message for R U OK?Day 2020 is:

‘THERE’S MORE TO SAY AFTER R U OK?’

 
2020 has been a challenging year for everyone and circumstances have made it even more important for us all to stay connected and, for those who are able, be willing to support those around us.
You don’t have to be an expert to keep the conversation going when someone says they’re not OK. By knowing what to say you can help someone feel supported and access appropriate help, which can make a really positive difference to their life.
If you feel like something’s not quite the same with someone you know – there’s something going on in their life or you notice a change in what they’re saying or doing – trust that gut instinct and take the time to ask them “Are you OK?” If someone says they’re not OK, make time to listen, encourage action and check in. That conversation could change, or even save, their life.

HOW TO BE A GOOD FRIEND AND ASK R U OK?

We’re never too young to look out for one another and lend support. In this video, Alec shows you how to be a good friend and ask “Are you OK.” We don’t expect you to fix someone’s problems completely, but you can:
  • listen to what they’re saying
  • show that you care
  • tell a teacher or other trusted adult if you are worried about a friend.

TOGETHER IT’S OK! VIDEO

R U OK? has created a music video to encourage children to take the time to comfort their friends when they’re feeling blue.
– Mrs Rust 🙂

Your Daily Dose of Reading – Absolutely Fantastic by Tom Gates

Today I am sharing another novel with you all…

‘Absolutely Fantastic’ by Tom Gates.

Have you read any of the Tom Gates series before?

See an audiobook version of this story below:

Which chapter did you enjoy the most? Why?

What makes Tom Gate’s books so interesting to read?

What was the funniest part in the text?

Who was your favourite character?

 

I’d love to hear what books you’d like to see on my next Daily Dose of Reading post! Feel free to email me at kate.rust@education.vic.gov.au if you have a suggestion.

 

Happy reading!

 

– Mrs Rust 🙂

Anxiety – Smiling Minds

This year has been full of BIG changes and lots of uncertainty. Change and uncertainty can be tough for everyone. It can often make us worried or even anxious.

It is important that we learn how to recognise worry and anxiety in ourselves and others and learn ways to manage these thoughts.

The video below talks about how it can feel inside us when we are worried or anxious and how mindfulness can help us to manage our feelings.

As I have mentioned previously, if you haven’t already downloaded the SMILING MINDS app, I highly recommend it! You can download it from the app store and there is also a website version if you don’t have access to a Smart Phone or Tablet. It is a great way to practice mindfulness each day and can help you when you are feeling worried, anxious, confused or sad.

I have also attached links below to another set of age-specific ‘Kids Care Packs’ that you can download. This has information for families about anxiety and worry, suggestions of parts of the Smiling Minds app you might like to go to and also activities for kids to help with mindfulness.

These packs focus particularly on:

  • unhelpful thoughts
  • anxious mind and body
  • bouncing back

There are three Care Packs depending on your age.
Click on the appropriate link below to download a copy of the
KIDS CARE
PACK for Anxiety.

Care Pack for Ages 5 – 7

SM_KidsCarePacks_Module2_5-7

Care Pack for Ages 8 – 10

SM_KidsCarePacks_Module2_8-10

Care Pack for Ages 11 – 12

SM_KidsCarePacks_Module2_11-12

 

I have loved hearing about what you have been doing during remote learning. What have you been doing when you feel worried or anxious? Feel free to email me at kate.rust@education.vic.gov.au and share what you and your family are doing.

Look after yourself. We miss you!

– Mrs Rust 🙂

Raising Learners Podcast Series – FREE Resource for Parents / Carers

There is another fabulous new resource for parents and carers to help support their children during remote and flexible learning…

“The Raising Learners podcast”

The Department of Education and Training has funded a 10-episode podcast series through the Raising Children Network called ‘Raising Learners’. It features parenting experts from organisations including the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Career Education Association Victoria, as well as the Australian eSafety Commissioner, Julie Inman-Grant.

Raising Learners provides parents with practical advice, tips and ideas for supporting children’s health, wellbeing and engagement at school and at home. Topics include how to connect with your child’s school and community, how to best support your child’s learning and how to keep your child safe online.

These topics were drawn from common questions that parents raised with the Department’s coronavirus (COVID-19) hotline and Parentline.

The first three episodes will be available on 1 September, and the rest throughout terms 3 and 4. Raising Learners can be accessed via podcast apps on your smartphone and also at the Raising Children Network website.

Happy listening!

 

– Mrs Rust 🙂

Managing the ‘Coronacoaster’ – Parent Webinar REPEAT

A FREE WEBINAR FOR PARENTS…

For those of you who missed out last time, on Tuesday 15 September, the Department of Education and Training is again presenting a free webinar for parents and carers. This webinar will be with renowned child psychologist Dr Michael Carr-Gregg, on building family resilience during coronavirus (COVID-19).

This session is a repeat of the August 25th session. 

Dr Carr-Gregg’s webinar is aptly named Managing the Coronacoaster – Tips for building resilient families in the coronavirus era. In this webinar, Dr Carr-Gregg provides tools and strategies for parents and carers to help manage the lockdown and remote learning. Topics include:

*   your supportive role

*   setting the emotional tone

*   focusing on what you can control

*   how to deal with disappointment

*   further resources and where to get help.

Dr Carr-Gregg’s presentation will run for 45 minutes. This will be followed by a 15-minute question-and-answer session in which parents and carers can ask Dr Carr-Gregg questions.

 

Webinar details:

*   When: Tuesday 15 September

*   Time: 7:30pm

*   Duration: 45-minute presentation followed by 15-minute Q&A session

*   Format: online via Webex

*   Cost: free

 

How to register:

To register and for more information visit the Managing the Coronacoaster – Tips for building resilient families in the coronavirus era eventbrite page https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/managing-the-coronacoaster-tips-for-building-resilient-families-registration-117927100131

Parents who attended the August Webinar with Dr Michael Carr-Gregg found the session to be very interesting and took away lots of great tips and advice. I’d love to hear if you attend and what you got out of this presentation!

 

– Mrs Rust 🙂

Focus On What You CAN Control

During this time you may be feeling a lot of big emotions like worry and frustration. You might be worried that you’ve missed out on your footy grand final. You might be frustrated that it’s raining and you can’t go for a walk. You might feel anxious about completing a piece of work for school. These emotions are totally normal but sometimes all the worry in the world will not change the fact that a particular event is happening.

One thing that I want to share with you today is…

There’s NO point in worrying about things you CAN NOT control.

I want to introduce you all to the Circle of Control. In this circle are all the things in your life that you CAN control. These are the things that we should be putting our time, energy and emotions into. By putting lots of time, energy and positivity into these things we can make a huge impact on our day. Some examples are below…

By focusing more on your own “Circle of Control” instead of the many things you can not control, you can make a big difference in how you are feeling each day. Happy instead of sad, confident instead of worried, determined instead of frustrated!

Remember…

We CAN NOT control others’ thoughts, behaviours and choices.

We CAN control our own thoughts, behaviours and choices.

We CAN NOT control the fact that school work and homework will happen.

We CAN control how much time we spend on school work, how much effort we put in, or whether we complete the tasks.

We CAN NOT control how annoying our siblings might be today.

We CAN control how we respond to our siblings.

We CAN NOT control how others look after themselves.

We CAN control looking after ourselves by moving our bodies, eating healthy foods and drinking lots of water.

***

Today, I’d love for you to follow the steps below to create your own ‘Circle of Control’.

  1. Find a place that is calm for you. This might be your room, a place in your backyard or somewhere else special in your house.

  2. On a large piece of paper draw a large circle, taking up about the top half of the sheet.

  3. In the middle of the circle put your name and the words “I CAN CONTROL”.

  4. We need to put our time, energy, and emotions towards the things we CAN control and not to waste them on things we CAN NOT. Come up with some examples of things that can go in the circle, drawing or writing a sentence or picture.

  5. When you think of something that CAN NOT be controlled, write or draw that concept OUTSIDE the circle.

  6. Once you have a number of things listed in both areas, hang your Circle of Control in a place that is easily visible so that you can look at it regularly.

  7. As you think of new ideas, add them to your circle (or outside your circle)!

  8. When you are feeling worried or anxious, look at your Circle of Control and ask yourself, “is that inside my Circle of Control?” If the answer is NO, remember not to spend your time, energy and emotions on it.

 

I hope you are all doing really well. I’d love to see the Circle of Control posters you are creating at home. Feel free to email me at any time at kate.rust@education.vic.gov.au

 

– Mrs Rust 🙂

Your Daily Dose of Reading – The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

This week our book is…

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

I remember reading this book as a child and it is still one of my favourites. I think I have about five copies of this story! Harry and Max also love this one!

There are some really cute activity ideas online if you are looking for something fun to do! My boys and I are going to make one of the following crafts together this week!

 

Happy Reading!

– Mrs Rust 🙂

Virtual Tours with Zoos Victoria

Since all our Zoos are temporarily closed for visits due to COVID restrictions, Zoos Victoria have released some virtual tours via YouTube. These videos run for one hour in total and showcase the amazing animals at each zoo.

Virtual Tour of Healesville Sanctuary:

Virtual Tour of Melbourne Zoo:

Virtual Safari Tour at Werribee Open Range Zoo:

Virtual Walking Tour of Werribee Open Range Zoo:

There is also some great Keeper Talks available on the Zoos Victoria YouTube page if you’d like to see a particular animal up close and personal!

 

I hope you enjoy exploring Victoria’s amazing zoos!

 

– Mrs Rust 🙂