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Middle Harbour Public School

Middle Harbour Public School

Respect, Responsibility, Personal Best

Telephone02 9953 6232


FAQs for Parents


Q: How is learning at home different from learning at school?

A: Under the current change to school routines, all learning will be programmed as a single unit of work whether it be at home or at school.  Teachers at school will supervise learning at school in the same way that parents will be asked to supervise learning from home. It must be made clear that students who stay home are not being enrolled into ‘Home learning’ or ‘Distance Education’. Students are participating in a unique learning environment based on the current Global Health situation. This is an unprecedented, unique situation and will look different to normal face-to-face education.

Q: What equipment to I need to be able to learn from home?

A: While our school continues to provide a learning from home solution as a result of in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, it is preferable that your child have some type of device to access their learning at home, shared or individual. On this device, your child will need:  

·       The student Seesaw application 

·       A camera to take photos and record videos 

·       To access to the internet and various learning websites (teachers will guide you on this) 

·       To be able to download other applications from Google Play store or the Apple App Store (if required)

If your child does not have access to a shared device from home, or you would prefer for the learning to be delivered offline, please notify the classroom teacher as soon as possible. Learning that is set for each class can be modified to be accessible to all students, both online and offline, however teachers will need time to make these modifications.  

Q: What will the school day look like, if my child is learning from home?

A: Currently, a single unit of work is planned weekly and distributed to parents via email and the school website. We understand that many parents may be adjusting to working from home, managing multiple children’s learning from home and sharing devices, so we have tried to design the unit of work to meet any of these needs. It is designed to be flexible, you can complete the activities in any order, on any day, at any time, or you can follow the suggested daily timetable found at the end should you wish. MUST DO and CAN DO activities have been indicated in English and Maths to help you identify what to prioritise in a day or week.

Should you wish to set a structured daily timetable for your child, a suggested timetable has also been included similar to that which may be followed at school should you wish to use it.

Q: How do I contact my child’s teacher?

A: If you have any questions concerning the platform, student access, unit plan or home learning in general, please feel free to send an email to your child's class teacher via the school office.

Teachers will connect with students via Seesaw and Google Classroom throughout the week. Please note that these platforms are not for parent communication.

Q: How does my teacher communicate with students & parents when learning from home?

Every student has a class teacher and specialist teachers (Library, PE, Mandarin, Creative Arts). These teachers will deliver learning to your child via the online learning website set up for each year group, Google Classroom (years 5&6 only) or Seesaw. Students can ask questions about their learning on any of these three platforms. Teacher feedback will be given to students via Seesaw and/or Google Classroom (years 5&6 only)

Teachers will make contact with parents whenever necessary via email or phone.

Q: How does my child ‘check-in’ with their class teacher?

A: Teachers will connect with students via Seesaw, Google Classroom and/or Zoom throughout the week. Two Zoom 'check-in' sessions will be scheduled each day for your child to connect with their teacher and classmates, ask questions and receive feedback. Zoom sessions times and links for the following day will be sent out by class teachers via Seesaw. These sessions are optional, however I would encourage your child to attend at least one of these sessions each day if possible. Please note that the Seesaw, Zoom and Google Classroom platforms are not for parent communication. If you have any questions regarding the learning, please either call the school or send an email to the class teacher via the school office, and they will get back to you as soon as possible. If you are unable to access the tasks in this plan online, please contact the school office so we can make alternative arrangements.

Q: What do I do if my child is sick whilst learning from home?

A: Please let us know if your child is unwell and will not be participating in any home learning for the day via the usual methods of communication, including school email or Skoolbag eForm. 

Q: Who marks my child’s work?

A: Activities that teachers wish to be submitted for feedback will be indicated in red or as a ‘MUST DO’ activity. We strongly encourage your child to upload all of these tasks onto Seesaw or Google Classroom as instructed by your child’s classroom teacher. Teachers will be looking for completed tasks on Seesaw and are eager to provide students with feedback, so the work samples should be unedited to allow for this. In the absence of face-to-face teaching, feedback is the powerful tool through which teachers will be able to support your child to progress. Teachers will be online between 9am and 3pm through Seesaw or Google Classroom to provide feedback to your child once tasks are submitted.

Q: Do I have to complete tasks in the order as they are listed?

A: No, Our current weekly learning plans are designed to be flexible, you can complete the activities in any order, on any day, at any time, or you can follow the suggested daily timetable found at the end should you wish. MUST DO and CAN DO activities have been indicated in English and Maths to help you identify what to prioritise in a day or week.

Most task instructions have been created using visuals, videos or Seesaw activities to support your child to work independently, however, to help keep the learning on track, we do suggest working with or actively supervising your child wherever possible. To maintain enthusiasm, try to space out the learning and provide ‘brain breaks’ throughout the day. Physical activity and movement throughout the day is essential to keeping young minds ready to learn.   

Q: Can I adapt or change an activity?

A:  By all means, if you can change the activity so that it is more engaging at home using materials that you have available then do so. Students will gain more from measuring out ingredients while baking a cake then they will answering questions about measurement.

Q: What time is recess and lunch?

A: One of the benefits of learning from home is you get to decide when to take your break, and when you can have something to eat. It is a good idea to set out a schedule at the beginning of the day, to ensure you are not forgetting to break, or to eat when necessary. Timetables can be flexible and considered, as a guide for the days learning. They can be altered or changed, just be sure that you have an even balance between, work, play, and rest throughout the day.

Q: What should I do if my child has forgotten their password?

A: All student logins have been sent home to parents via Seesaw. They remain available on this app and can be viewed only by you. If for some reason you aren’t able to locate this, please contact your child’s classroom teacher via school email.  

Q: My child has completed all their work, what should they do now?

A: Please remember that learning from home in response to the COVID-19 pandemic is different to learning face-to-face at school.  Suggested guidelines put out by the Department of Education recommend that students during this time will be engaging in between 3-4 hours/day of subject specific learning plus time for sport and physical activity, games and play.  

We have supported students with what we consider an adequate amount of learning in the current circumstances.  If students have completed all their work we would encourage parents to choose activities from the Some activities and ideas for home for parents of primary and early learners information sheet or visit the Department’s Learning from Home webpage. Please also remember exercise and outdoor play is essential and a normal part of daily routine.

Q: My child did not complete everything that was set for them?

A: Learning journeys are different for every student, and so is the speed at which they work. If one activity flows into the next, or work is not completed, that is ok (it happens). Try again and reset for tomorrow.

We also understand that it is difficult for parents to maintain a home learning environment, when there are many distractions of daily life.  Home is not the regular place for learning to take place and it will take students, parents and teachers time to adapt. If little to no learning takes place in a day over a period of several days, please let your child’s classroom teacher know so that we can try and find a workable solution together. 

Q: My child can't log into the google slide/classroom/website using my gmail account.

A: Please make sure that for any work being accessed for your child that they are logging in using their @education.nsw.gov.au email account. If it is the first time signing in on the device, a new screen (student portal) will appear and the student will need to input their DoE username and student portal password which has been sent home via Seesaw. If your device gives you the option to remember the account, we suggest you do so. This will enable the device to 'remember' the student next time they log on to do any school work. 

Q: I can log one child in to see their work using their email address but when my other child tries to access their work on the computer, it  still shows my other child's work.

For eSafety reasons, each child has been allocated access to their own grade's work only. To be able to access another students work, the first child needs to sign out on that device. If you look for the students logo in (usually in the top right hand corner on Google tasks/activities/apps) you can click on their avatar or initial and select sign out. Once you have signed out of that account, you should then be able to sign in another student