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7 April, 2020

Set up at home and ready to learn

ALONG with parents all across the country, Mareeba’s Jenni Ward has been thrust into the teaching job.

By Rhys Thomas

ALONG with parents all across the country, Mareeba’s Jenni Ward has been thrust into the teaching job.

Queensland schools are now closed for the Easter break and prior to that moved to student free days for the last week of term amid COVID-19, It is unknown at this stage if schools will re-open after Easter.

Homes have now been turned into makeshift schools with children of all ages ready to learn online after the Easter break.

Jenni Ward has been teaching her three children – Maddie, Jammie and Brianna – who are all in different grades and requiring different teaching methods and resources.

Maddie, the youngest goes to Mareeba State School in grade 3, while Jammie and Brianna both go to Mareeba State High School and are in grade 7 and 9 respectively.

A makeshift classroom has been set up in the Ward household living room using old bedside tables to act as desks, and mother, turned teacher Jenni has had a taste of teaching.

“It’s very scary teaching your kids at home,” she said.

“They are all quite far apart so it’s challenging to teach.

“I’m not a teacher and I am also studying full time, so it’s very challenging.”

Jenni has also taken this chance to teach her kids other skills that are not taught in a classroom, which she called “life skills.”

“I added in our own ‘life skills’ area where I teach them about important skills used in life,” she said. “I think it’s important to keep kids educated.

“They were excited to do something different.”

Jenni decided to take her kids out of school and start homeschooling a week before the decision was passed down by the government, so she was initially at a disadvantage using an outdated homeschooling method.

Now with every parent expected to homeschool their child a better curriculum and system has been developed with teachers working very hard trying to get all the information and resources they could online.

It's a wait and see for parents, students and teachers, but which ever way it goes parents across the country have shown their resilience and abilty to adapt to the ever changing COVID-19 situation.

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