Dear Ordway Families,
October has brought with it some unexpected highs and lows. If you are a Seattle sports fan, watching the Seahawks play undefeated and celebrating The Seattle Storm as the 2020 WNBA champions are definitely highlights (and a nice distraction) for us fans. While both the WNBA and NBA can feel good about their organizations following the safety guidelines recommended by public health officials to have Covid-free pods, it reminds us of one of October's low points for Kitsap County residents which is seeing the current COVID-19 case trends rise in our county.
At the October 8th School Board Meeting, it was decided that the Board will review the Kitsap Public Health Data on Oct. 19. If the numbers look to be improving, and BISD logistics are in order, hybrid elementary students would return to school on the following tentative schedule: Grades K-1: Nov. 9; Grades 2-4: Nov. 23. If the data and the logistics are not looking good on Oct. 19, the School Board will pause implementing the hybrid model and review those components every three weeks.
Yes, we are all experiencing a roller coaster of emotions this fall but we have been getting through these tough times together through maintaining positive peer connections and creating collective experiences such as drive by events and virtual assemblies. The UW Medical Center has eight quick and easy recommendations that can help us adults support our children. Due to the fact that “Summer is typically less demanding on kids... (we can) anticipate increasing school demands and weather changes... (that can) lead to behaviors related to stress, chronic worry, anxiety and depression.Younger children don’t always have the words to express their anxiety, so it can emerge in tantrums and fighting with siblings, withdrawal, or in defiance to parents. Here is a brief summary of recommendations from Leslie Graham, a pediatric social worker at the UW Medicine :
Accept that normal life is on pause. Do your best to problem-solve and stay present. Focus on getting through the day; Breathe and use relaxation breathing techniques to seek calm and emotion-regulation, and teach these techniques to your children; Validate feelings through listening and do not feel obligated to always “fix.”; Routines should be predictable for meals and sleep; Socializing is important for kids and online is not enough. Make sure they go out and exercise; Make plans: Schedule little activities to look forward to, such as a bike ride or Zoom call with family and friends. Plan meals. “Plan those small moments”; Limit news; and, Seek help: Think of the doctor’s office or a school counselor as a place to seek help and resources
As Coach John Wooden once said “ All of life is peaks and valleys. Don’t let the peaks get too high and the valleys too low”. I appreciate your partnership in providing balance and care to the students in our learning community!