• Dear Parents and Guardians,

    Here we are embarking upon yet another change just as many of us were starting to fall into routine. This year has certainly been challenging on many levels and for many reasons and it seems just as we readjust, something else changes. Although it has been a challenging year, adversity has a purpose and if we allow it, we will come through this year of hardship stronger, wiser and more connected than we were before. As we move back to Phase 1 and Comprehensive Distance Learning, I hope to offer some tools/ “tips and tricks” to support your family and student to be successful.

    1. Routine and consistency- Keeping routine helps our brains to feel safe in knowing what will come next. With all this change, it is so important that you keep routine and consistency for your student as much as is possible- keep the same bedtime routine, the same morning routine and the same evening routine. Stay consistent in your rules and expectations.

    2. Schedules- when our brains are in fear or worry, we lose our rational thinking and planning skills. By posting a schedule of the day, our brain has one less thing to wonder about and can let go of some of that fear so we can use more of our brain.

    3. Plan ahead and practice- make a plan prior to the first day of class as to where your student(s) will sit, who and how will they ask for help, what is and isn’t okay during the school day, what to do if they get frustrated, etc. Rehearse this plan prior to the first day of virtual class.

    4. Movement- in order to use the “thinking” part of our brains, the lower parts of our brains must be regulated. One of the biggest ways that our lower brains regulate is through movement. Scheduling time throughout the daily routine to move will help your student be able to focus, learn and stay calm. Attached to this letter is a list of different videos to help your kids get up and move. This list is also featured on our school website.

    5. Self-Regulation- movement isn’t the only way that our lower brains stay regulated enough to use our “thinking” brains. In this time of loss and stress, it is extra important that we are keeping ourselves regulated. Some self-regulation strategies are:

    a. Breathing

    b. Music and Rhythm

    c. Connection to each other and FUN!

    d. Identifying your feelings and expressing them

    e. Taking a step away/changing your environment

    On our website, you can find the “calm folder” which will walk your student through using some of the above strategies. If you would like a paper copy, please ask your child’s teacher.

    Resources-

    If you need academic help for your student, please reach out to your child’s teacher. For community resources, mental/behavioral support for your student or support for yourself you may reach out to our District’s Behavior Interventionist, Celeste Huffaker (chuffaker@desd.k12.or.us; 541-670-0522).

    All change is loss and with loss, grief is usually accompanied. This year, we all have had many things to grieve over and I hope that you all have been reaching out where you can to gain the support you need. This time of constant change offers us the opportunity for growth. We have a chance to envision a new world. The world we create is up to us.

    Movement Links:

    Elementary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JoF_d5sgGgc https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1spJn2oXNmc&list=PL5IwRuPzeXy2-uLSFEnr3sGC-W6UvTDNV- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSdeIhmv6v0- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R4BNW_tveeo&list=PLikxXIVIy3vqqHe0NDD1n6dv1wenIcAsG- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFe0I8kkFOg- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OkO8DaPIyXo- simon says https://family.gonoodle.com/activities/fabios-meatball-run https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6YbSxMhsQ0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cSPmGPIyykU- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X655B4ISakg – yoga https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ZpkRAcgws4 -yoga

    Middle and High School: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O5ChXC-rHLE&t=22s- https://family.gonoodle.com/mixes/midday-energy https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_srg-18Fz0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1gMUbEAUFw https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=riicsTE2TzQ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMuJxd2Gpxo https://family.gonoodle.com/activities/take-on-the-day - mindfulness https://family.gonoodle.com/activities/get-back-on-track -mindfulness https://family.gonoodle.com/activities/lets-unwind -mindfulness and movement https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7kgZnJqzNaU -yoga https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Td6zFtZPkJ4 – yoga https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-6erFaJZqP4 - yoga https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X655B4ISakg - yoga

    GoNoodle has many videos for movement and relaxation for all age ranges: https://family.gonoodle.com/