Family & Education

The indoor snowman bringing a smile to home schooling

Three Jewish teachers have launched their own digital programme for children, Lockdown Learning


Schools and education agencies are not only the ones producing material for learning at home.

A trio of Jewish mothers from North London who are teachers have created their own online programme to help keep children occupied while schools are closed.

Lockdown Learning, which publishes daily sessions on Instagram, has built up nearly 2,400 followers in three weeks.

“We weren’t sure what the schools were planning on sending home,” said Sophie Fenton, who manages the primary PGCE teacher training course at the London School for Jewish Studies.

“So we decided we were going to do activities at home and we thought wouldn’t it be great to document what we were doing to support other parents.”

She and her partners, Daniella Churney, an early years teacher at Alonim Nursery in Whetstone, and Jemma Levy, who taught for several years at Chalgrove Primary in Finchley, have posted activities catering for different ages.

“Between us, our own kids cover the spectrum from toddler age up to 11.

“We wanted to do things that were fun and simple and could be done at home without having to buy resources or print out loads of worksheets.

“We wanted activities that would keep children engaged, excited and entertained but not a burden on parents.”

For instance, one activity was to ask their followers what Disney films their children preferred. “Then we followed with activities based on their two favourite films, Frozen and Mowana.”

For Frozen, the task was “to build a snowman out of ice by freezing water in different sizes of balloon.” And then to observe how it melted and measure how much water.

As well as activities for English, maths, and other subjects, they have produced demonstration videos with their own children “so parents can see some of the questioning we are doing to develop learning”. They’ve also done short videos to hope parents understand subjects such as phonics in order to support what their children do in school.

“I wasn’t sure how interested children were going to be in the work that was coming from school,” Mrs Fenton said. “After a while, your children are going to get bored writing a diary every day.

“What is coming out of schools is quite mixed. Some are producing a lot for children to get on with but some require a lot of parental time. We are trying to create independent activities for the older ones.”

Another problem for parents is having too many links to different sites. “In Lockdown Learning, all the activities are in place – so they are all available together.”



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