COVID-19 impact on schools- Catch up Resources

Check out our free activities for learners. We’ll post activities each week.

We’ve put together a list of over 1000 words from across the Grade 4-6 curriculum (English, Life Skills, Math, Natural Science, Social Science) so learners stay up to date when schools are closed, and/or use the exercises to catch up. Each week we will post a list of words along with one spelling rule per post. Click on the links to view/download the free activities:

Loss of teaching and learning time. Let’s catch up! 

According to the NIDS-CRAM study, between March 2020 and June 2021 most primary school learners in South Africa lost between 70-100% of the academic year because of Covid-19 school closings and class rotation.  As a consequence, this loss of teaching and learning time would have some effect on the senior and FET phases, and extend to tertiary— possibly into the next decade.

While this may seem daunting, the situation requires that parents, caregivers, and everyone will have to assume even greater responsibility to help learners to catch up. It may not always be easy, but it has to be done. We need to support the development of literate learners who will be able to fully participate in society and in the economy. It’s all hands on deck.

Why spelling? Spelling is key to reading, spoken language development and literacy, which will afford our learners an opportunity for a better future.  And if you’re thinking that you can just use spell-check, remember that  Spell-check won’t help if you don’t already know how to spell a word. Better spellers tend to be better readers and writers.

 

How to create structure for catch up activities for children ?

  1. Create a schedule! Make it a family activity. This gives the child a sense of autonomy and they are more likely to want to do the work. When explaining the schedule to them, use “first-then” language to help them learn a sequence of events – first do the math work, then you can play games.
  2. Make the schedule visible, put it in where your child can see it. This will keep them on track.Include specific time for learning
    Give an example of a schedule:
    (i)  breakfast
    (ii) clean up
    (iii) school work | catch-up activities
    (iv) free time
    (v) family time
  1. Make learning fun!
    Remember, not all learning has to be from books or the computer. Math can be done in the kitchen (teaching fractions, multiplications, addition using ingredients) Break up learning too!
  2. Staying active is still important, and with the change of season there are lots more things to do outside. Being outside could be in your own back yard, and you can make it a great science lesson!  For example, washing clothes is an example of chemistry and technology; a vegetable garden is an example of botany.  Don’t forget art and drama, too! Use the word list from the weekly activities to create ABC conversations and storytelling. 

More Tips

  • Focus on the positive! Kids will feed off your energy and if you think it’s going to be a battle to get them to learn, they will give you that battle.
  • Be flexible
  • Start new traditions with your family. Find new hobbies to share, weekly activities such as board games, puzzles, quizzes, storytelling family history.
  • Make sure you factor in time for breaks and naps! If your children are older, they still need down-time. How about starting a Covid-19 journal (imagine reading this in 10 years time), drawing, or reading for fun. Don’t forget your own downtime!
  • Parents and guardians, consider your needs too! If you’re working from home, be realistic about the amount of time your work will need. No points for trying to be a superhero.  This is an unprecedented time.  It’s not business as usual. If you have younger children you may need to schedule during their downtime when they’ll need less supervision. Or, while they do schoolwork, you can do work – keep in mind they may need help with their work so be realistic with your ability to do so.
  • Have patience with them – and yourself. Creating new routines can take time. Right about now you’re really appreciating their teachers even more. 

Four things to remember:

    • Have fun and focus on the positive
    • Be consistent  maintain the routine
    • Make sure to involve the kids in the decision making
    • Use the additional resources

 

For information on COVID-19, visit the official National Department of Health COVID-19 support service on Whatsapp: +27 60 012 3456