Ministry of Education
Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch

In Touch – May 2021

Date: May 3, 2021 | Categories: amethyst | Tags: newsletter

1515 Cheapside Street
London, Ontario, N5V 3N9
Tel. (519) 453-4400 / 1-866-640-0044
Fax (519) 453-4193
Website: pdsbnet.ca/amethyst
Twitter: @AmethystSchool
Mrs. Sherry Eacrett (Residence Manager)
Mr. Sean Gregory (Principal)

Dates to Remember

  • May 3 – OYAP Parent Presentation (5:30 pm)
  • May 9 – Mother’s Day
  • May 18 – unLearn Student Presentations
  • May 24 – Victoria Day Holiday (No Classes)

Amethyst May Update

We are extremely proud of our students and staff for another successful transition back to remote learning over the
last 2 weeks. We recognize the challenges involved and continue to see the determination and commitment of so
many of our students who have adapted once again to our on-line platform and demonstrate “Grit” and a “Growth
Mindset” each and every day. Please continue to communicate with school and residence staff on how we may best
support your child if remote learning challenges arise. Keep up the excellent work!

Work Hard. Be Nice. Believe

Congratulations To

April CONGRATULATIONS to
Cameron, OSSLT students, Finn, Justin, & Griffin for receiving our Grit Award.
Parker for receiving our WOW Belt Award.
Connor & Alex for receiving our Growth Mindset Award.
Geography Class (Spence) & Remote Week A & B for receiving our Golden Headset Award (Technology).

“unLearn” Student Presentations

On Tuesday, May 18th, Amethyst students will participate in a workshop that reviews and discusses stereotypes, racism, prejudice and discrimination. These sessions are developed to challenge student thinking and the societal norms that may marginalize others. This virtual presentation will be done via Google Meet. We will have two sessions:

  • (9:00 – 10:15 am) elementary and
  • (1:00 – 2:15 pm) secondary.

For more information please visit https://unlearn.com/.

OYAP Presentation

Please join us Monday, May 3rd at 5:30 pm (virtually) for a parent information session about the Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP). This is a wonderful opportunity to learn about the options, timelines and benefits of this program for students. Please RSVP with Janet Harju if you would like to attend. For more information visit – https://oyap.com.

Take a Break – Outdoor Time

There are many benefits of being outside. Getting outside provides more than a break for
students – it is also good for their physical and mental health and development. Children
and teens who spend time enjoying the outdoors can be:

  • Physically healthier.
  • More engaged in learning.
  • Better behaved.
  • Mentally healthier.

Remember to take a break each day while working from home …

  • Walking
  • Biking
  • Gardening
  • Yard Work

Residence Team Update

Spring has sprung here at Amethyst! We were lucky enough to have some beautiful weather in April and the students took full advantage of it. We played sports outside, took long walks around the property, participated in scavenger hunts, played games, did crafts and socialized outside. It was so nice to be out in the fresh air and to see all of the students having such a great time! Spring break has come and gone and our students were able to seamlessly pivot back to remote learning following the break. Residence counsellors have made themselves available during the instructional day should teachers require or if students need any extra support. We have started a secondary American Sign Language (ASL) club which will run on Wednesday’s from 4:00 – 4:30 pm in Google Classroom and an Elementary ASL club which will run on Monday’s from 4:00 – 4:30 pm. Additionally, look for our elementary Math help schedule in the coming days. During the month of May, residence counsellors will continue to support our students virtually. Don’t hesitate to reach out if assistance is required.

Amethyst Residence Team

Mental Health

How to support your child’s mental health during COVID-19:

Stay calm. Children look to us for how to respond to stressful situations. Remember you being calm, helps your child to remain calm. Think about ways to manage the stress you might be carrying (talking with a friend, going for a walk, focusing on gratitude, etc.) so that you can be at your best in supporting your children. If you are feeling overwhelmed or extremely worried, pause and take a breath before speaking with your child about COVID-19.

  • Keep it simple. The COVID-19 situation can feel overwhelming and complex. There is a lot of information coming at us at once. You can help your child by breaking it down into more manageable parts and focusing on the things that are most important to them. For example, reminding them that they are safe, explaining that cancellations are happening to help keep them and others in the community safe, telling them that by washing their hands regularly they are helping everyone, etc. Having some language to help them to understand the situation, that you can repeat in calm ways, can help.
  • Listen. Let your child talk through how they’re feeling. Acknowledge their emotions and help to label them. You can say, “Yes, I can see you’re feeling worried” or “it is okay to feel angry that you can’t see grandma right now.” Some children may not easily talk about their feelings or have the vocabulary to identify and label different feelings. If you’re noticing different behaviour, you can say. “I wonder if you might be feeling worried, or sad?” and, “what might help you feel better?”
  • Keep information age-appropriate. Answer their questions as factually as possible but keep responses age-appropriate. Balance the facts with reassurance. Your child needs to know that they, and you, are safe.
  • Limit exposure. Avoid listening to or watching news coverage about the pandemic with young children around. Avoid having adult conversations about your own worries in front of children. Encourage older children to be aware of their social media use and to take breaks from this. Help them to think critically about what they are reading on-line, sorting myths from facts.
  • Try to establish a flexible routine for your child. This might include a regular, but relaxed, time for waking and sleeping, and perhaps for meals and snacks. Some parents will be working from home and may have new opportunities to connect with their child during the day. Playing and talking together can help everyone to feel more relaxed. This can take some planning at first while new schedules are being worked out. Watch for those natural moments when you can just be together and follow your child’s lead.
  • Be patient and understanding. You may notice behaviour changes in your child. Children react differently to changes in routine and stress. They may become frustrated more easily, or more emotional, or engage in things they did at a much younger age. Try to be understanding with your child, as they may just need more reassurance and calm during this time.

(Taken from the School Mental Health Ontario Website – https://smho-smso.ca/)

TO REPORT YOUR CHILD’S ABSENCE, PLEASE EMAIL THE SCHOOL AT janet.harju@ontario.ca OR BY CALLING
(519) 453-4408 ext. #1527 (24 HOUR VOICE MAIL).