Every Friday there's something different to look forward to for pupils from Mount Pleasant Primary School.
This week the theme was "loungeroom picnic" and families shared pictures of their lunchtime picnic settings on a shared site so children could see what their friends and school mates were up to.
Last week it was Mount Pleasant MasterChef when every family received a baking set to make and decorate cakes.
It's all part of the school's Fun Fiesta Friday and a push to keep this second challenging period of remote learning fun and engaging for children and parents.
For twins Lily and Matilda Watson, 6, the Friday activities give them something to look forward to and work toward during the week.
"They love having something different to focus on," said mum Kylie Watson.
"From about Tuesday it's all about what are we going to do, planning how to do it and it's something exciting to look forward to because at the moment there's not a lot of other stuff going on in terms of play dates and the things they would normally do."
Mount Pleasant Primary and many other schools across the region have put more of a focus on engagement, choice and interaction during the current remote learning period.
"For us every Friday is a different theme and it's really about keeping it fun and fresh for families," said Mount Pleasant Primary principal Kate Robinson.
"And one of the biggest benefits is when they do it they put up a photo in a shared online space so families can see what each other is doing and interact.. It's about trying to maintain that sense of community and really focus on getting the balance right between schoolwork and wellbeing."
Lessons learned during term two's first period of remote learning have meant some changes to the experience during term three.
There are now more opportunities for students to connect with each other and their teachers during Webex video conferencing sessions.
There are still sessions where the whole class is involved, but also more small group Webex chats to children can talk to each other and their teachers.
Work is also offered as hard copy packs for families who prefer less technology time or struggle with internet connectivity.
"We understand that every family situation is unique so we are giving them the option," Ms Robinson said.
Choice boards also give pupils more options on the type of work they complete and, in doing so, improve the level of engagement with their school work.
"Rather than saying here is all the things you have to do today, the choice board has a range of things they can choose to do for their reading and writing, giving students some agency over what they do.
"From our own experience we knew children thrive with choice, human beings thrive with choice, and if you give them a sense of agency you get more engagement which is what we've found and that engagement is definitely elevated this time around."
IN OTHER NEWS
Ms Watson said Lily and Matilda were enjoying remote learning more this time around.
"We are probably doing better than the first time. School has made a few changes which have been helpful this time around and they knew what to expect. When it came in last time it was a bit up in the air but this time we knew what was happening.
"The kids love to connect online with Webex and with the shared fun activities it's good to know other people are doing the same thing. It can be really easy to get stuck in thinking we are the only people doing this, so it's really good to see other people doing the same thing and interacting with other kids."
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