The Department of Education and Training has partnered with mindfulness program Smiling Mind to produce resources to support VCE/VCAL students to remain positive and engaged in their education during the coronavirus pandemic.

The first of six episodes launched today, and includes:

  • A short video
  • Online tip sheet
  • Mindfulness meditations on taking care of yourself.

 

The Education Department has published a suite of new resources to help parents support the wellbeing and mental health of their children. These resources are available on the Department’s website: Managing screen time, health and wellbeing.

These resources cover a range of topics including:


The Student Wellbeing Hub is a space for educators, parents and carers and students to find resources and support that promote wellbeing and learning within the education community.

Specific COVID-19 wellbeing resources have also been created to support learning communities during the COVID-19 crisis and beyond.

The school recovery toolkit is a popular resource for members of the school community and provides information regarding the impact of trauma in the classroom and how to support recovery.

 

ReachOut is an online mental health organisation for young people and their parents. They have developed a range of support resources to help teenagers, parents and schools through the coronavirus pandemic. 

The resources range from explainers and tips on common problems, through to online forums and structured 'online classroom' activities. 

Go to the ReachOut home page

A few examples of ReachOut resources:


 

The Raising Children website (supported by Dep't of Social Services) has some useful resources for parents and carers on dealing with the COVID-19 crisis:

  • Managing and talking with your kids about distancing and self-isolation
  • Pregnancy
  • Face masks - suppporting children and teenagers

See the Raising Children website


 

ABC Online has created some very useful resources for parents struggling to deal with COVID-19 and its impact on their children - and themselves.

From well-known parenting educator and author Maggie Dent:

'Short & Curly' kids ethics podcast

  • Bonus episode all about COVID-19. Hosts Carl Smith and Matt Beard talk about the importance of cooperation during the pandemic, how social isolation is doing something for the greater good and looking at fun things you can do if you are home from school.

'Mindfully' podcast

  • Mindfully, The ABC's mindfulness podcast is re-packaging some of the meditations they've released from previous series as part of a special series they're calling Corona Calm. The meditations cover everything from dealing with anxiety to one specifically for children. They're releasing one per week for the next 8 weeks. Here's the first one

These resources have been developed for teachers, but parents may also find them useful.

  • Be You (supported by Beyond Blue) resources for teachers
  • More to come...

 

The Education Department has published a page for parents, "Talking to your child about coronavirus".

The page includes practical advice on how to discuss the topic with your child, adapting information to the child's age, being guided by your child in what matters you discuss, focussing on positives and looking after yourself. 


 

Now more than ever, parents are looking for ways to protect their teenager’s mental wellbeing.

 

The Partners in Parenting program, delivered by Prevention United and Monash University, is a free, evidence-based, online program for parents of teenagers to protect their mental wellbeing. 

The program includes practical parenting tips that are particularly relevant right now as families cope with COVID-19.

 

Parents can sign up at partnersinparenting.com.au


 

The ongoing global shock of the COVID-19 pandemic and its likely societal, political and economic repercussions look set to dominate how the 2020s unfold in significant ways. Monash University has published a series of short articles with predictions for what’s to come, from twenty-one of its education experts.

Read the article on the Monash website

 

In this article, Dr Kerry Howells discusses the value of practising gratitude in these difficult times.

Parents around the world are not only struggling with the enormous changes and challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, but are also being asked to step in to help with facilitating learning at home. For many this is adding further to an already stressful situation. Asking parents and carers to be up to the task of guiding their child’s learning is based on huge assumptions: that parents have the time, resources and emotional fortitude to do what the school is asking of them; that they have the confidence to do so; and that they themselves have had a positive experience of schools and learning.

Parents in this situation might think that practising more gratitude is counterintuitive or in fact a bizarre recommendation when there are so many hardships and complexities they have to deal with. However, what we have learned about the power of gratitude to enhance learning – and also more broadly to improve health and wellbeing – shows that is highly relevant to meeting the challenges parents and carers are currently facing.

 

Susan McLean from CyberSafety Solutions has produced a series of free videos on how to stay safe in the online environment. Transcripts are also available. 

The presentations include:

  • Internet facts vs fiction
  • Duty of care (for educators)
  • Cyberbullying
  • Screen time
  • Sexting
  • Laws and legislation
  • Risk and Reality (Facebook Live event)

Some videos are intented to be watched with your primary or secondary aged children. 

If you're feeling worried or struggling to cope during isolation, Beyondblue is there to help.

They are offering:

  • Phone support
  • Web chat support
  • Online community forum

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