A North West mum has taken her children out of a Cloncurry school to teach them remotely from their cattle station, due to COVID-19.
Ele Avery lives on a cattle station near McKinlay with her husband and three children, but made the decision to remove the children from St Joseph's Catholic School last week due to family health concerns and anxiety around COVID-19.
While there remains no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the North West, Ms Avery said she took the children out voluntarily.
"Although the school is still open and doing an amazing job, we decided that to avoid the craziness and anxiety and stay at the station. It's better to be productive here on the station as a family than have the kids bored and anxious in town.
"My son and I have bad asthma and as we are in a remote part of Australia, we decided the risk wasn't with it."
Ms Avery said this was the first week teaching the kids from home and it had been a rewarding challenge.
"It's very hard teaching your own kids, and I praise the distance education mums that do full time," she said.
"But it's also a positive way to connect with them and really get an understanding of what they are capable of above just general weekly homework. I've just realised that my four-year-old is a lot smarter than I realised."
Ms Avery said although they did not have a classroom like other distance education families but the dining room table sufficed, in addition to some classroom rules.
"I have had to make a rule that they put their hand up to talk like in a real classroom situation otherwise everyone is interrupting," she said.
"The teachers have been emailing lots of work, and the schools have also put together packs with readers to send out, how wonderful!! I've also found a lot of online worksheets and ideas."
Teaching two boys in grade one and grade five and a girl in Kindy, Ms Avery said the kids were enjoying learning from home but she needed to find different ways to keep them interested.
"I'm not a trained teacher, it's not a project to take on lightly, but I'm hoping we can take some of the learning out into the paddock," she said.
"My grade 5 son is learning to calculate perimeter and area, so tomorrow we have decided to get out a tape measure and calculate the distances of the station sheds, grain feeders, the house paddock and make things real for him.
"This may even involve him driving the buggy around the fence line and measuring the distance on the odometer.
"I'm just hoping to make a positive impact in our lives in a time of craziness."
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