The current pandemic has shocked the world, yet many people have also been awestruck by the adaptability, creativity, and speed with which a new way of life has been adopted. In particular, teachers and learning support staff across the country have seamlessly swapped their classrooms, white board markers, and desks, for online virtual lessons, to ensure that no-one’s education gets put on hold.
Whilst this is potentially great news for young people with a long-term illness from an educational standpoint, many will be experiencing greater social isolation than ever before. The risk of infection may mean even further restricted access to friends, family, and the outside world. We believe that keeping in touch with these children and young people during these uncertain times is more important than ever, and have thus created some guidance on how you can use AV1 whilst schools remain closed.
Using AV1 outside of school
Even with schools closed, streaming through AV1 doesn’t have to stop. To help vulnerable students stay connected, a staff member at school could bring AV1 to their own home and allow the user to connect to that way. Regular check-ins keep the child part of the school community, ensuring they feel comfortable rejoining their friends and teachers when classrooms re-open.
One of our charity partners, SpecialEffect, has been using AV1 ‘robots’ to keep children connected during isolation. Their ‘Bubblebusters’ project provides children with cancer an AV1, and sometimes these children are isolated for up to 12 months or more. The AV1 ‘robots’ have not only kept them connected with school but also, during these particularly difficult times, with families that have been temporarily separated. ‘’We aim to enhance the lives of many, many more children with cancer by providing a way to reconnect with their friends and education to bring an end to their isolation.‘’ explains Harry, SpecialEffect Technician. You can read more about their project and watch their stream explaining the scheme here.
For those schools still open, AV1 could join in with the activities, providing vital social contact for the child at home in isolation. AV1 could also be dropped at a friend or relative’s house so the child can speak to their friends and complete their schoolwork together.
Here are 5 ideas for keeping AV1 users engaged whilst outside the classroom;
- Easter Egg Hunt with AV1
- Nature trail
- Fun Quiz - with AV1 as the host!
- AV1 campout - in the garden
- AV1 makeover - decorate your AV1 with stickers and accessories
AV1 at Easter
It is Easter time! and we want to invite our AV1 users to send in their best Easter-themed AV1 pictures! Decorate your AV1 using our colouring sheet, which can be downloaded here, and send in photos of your entries. Tweet or Instagram us at @_noisolation, or send photos to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will share our favourites on social media!
We love hearing from our customers and partners about their AV1 user stories. During this period out of school, now would be a great time to capture some of your experiences. Has AV1 had a positive impact on one of your students? Has it provided them with an experience that would have been difficult for them to be part of otherwise? User stories are a great way to share positive news, inspiring your staff, supporters and funders.
Staff training - throughout May we will be holding free staff training sessions online. This gives teachers the chance to log into an AV1 remotely, whilst we explain the different features of AV1 and outline the various privacy and safeguarding measures. Keep a look-out for a follow up email offering dates for sessions, but in the meantime, please speak to your interested schools offering them this opportunity.
We want teachers and staff involved in AV1 projects to feel comfortable and fully prepared for using AV1 when schools reopen. We know it will be difficult for some children to restart school, even when self-isolation ends for everyone else. AV1 can help them.
Have a happy Easter, and stay safe!