Queensland children in remote areas will gain access to a new digital long-distance learning resource under changes passed by State Parliament last night.
The “e-kindy” program, designed for kids who are unable to make it to regular kindergartens, is expected to be available from next year.
LNP Education Minister John-Paul Langbroek supports the scheme that was originally proposed by the former Labor government.
“The Newman government is committed to providing universal access to quality early childhood education, which is why we are working to make kindergarten programs more accessible to families that can’t regularly access a centre-based kindergarten program,” Mr Langbroek said.
“The distance education program is based on the Queensland Kindergarten Learning Guidelines and provides opportunities for children to participate in teacher-delivered web lessons, interactive online activities including iPad applications, in-home activities derived from teacher-developed materials and possible opportunities for children to interact face-to-face with other children and their teacher.”
It has been developed to ensure kids in remote locations, those with medical issues and those whose parents have itinerant lifestyles, such as carnival workers, still have access to quality education.
E-kindy is to be delivered by State Schools of Distance Education and will be provided free to those eligible to register.
Isolated Children’s Parents’ Association president Andrew Pegler said he was excited about the program to be rolled out early next year.
“We have had a trial program running throughout this year and all the feedback we have received so far has been positive. We haven’t had one complaint,” he said.
“So far all the work has been done out of Brisbane, but next year we are hoping to get more teachers involved to establish a local presence in the regions.”
Legislative changes to allow the scheme to proceed were approved by Queensland Parliament last night.
Expressions of interest to enrol in the program are available through the Brisbane School of Distance Education web site: http://brisbanesde.eq.edu.au/
“The distance education program provides opportunities for children to participate in teacher-delivered web lessons, interactive online activities including iPad applications, in-home activities derived from teacher-developed materials and possible opportunities for children to interact face-to-face with other children and their teacher”
3. Back Pain
Many moms experience discomfort in their backs during the later stages of pregnancy. Back pain can also be caused by ligaments stretching. Connie R. talked to her nurse practitioner about this type of back ache: "She says that it's ligament pain (we have them in our backs, too) and she recommends ice pack/compress [since] heat can only make it worse."
Another source of back pain is your baby's movement and pressure on sensitive areas in your body. Lisa B. is frustrated that with her third pregnancy, it's hard to find relief from all the strain: "I am so sore through my back and pelvis it hurts to lay in bed, it hurts to sit for too long, it hurts to lay in bed for too long and it hurts to walk around too much." She found relief with visits to a chiropractor, where she learned some stretching exercises that help: "One thing that I really like to do is to get down on my hands and knees and just let my belly hang and take all that pressure off my back, then just arch and roll your back (think yoga poses!)."
4. Leg Cramps
Leg cramps and muscle spasms can be common during pregnancy. Several members advise that these pains are almost always caused by dehydration, low potassium, or both. Ashley B. experienced leg cramps with all three of her pregnancies: "Drink plenty of water and make sure you are getting enough potassium (found in bananas and raisins)... this really worked for me. Also you could try sleeping with a pillow between your legs."
5. Braxton-Hicks Contractions
Your body has it's own way of practicing and preparing for labour, and it's known as Braxton-Hicks. These are "fake" or "practice" contractions that you may experience during the final weeks before your baby is due. Jessica A. describes it beautifully: "That tightening that you feel from time to time in your uterus may feel like real labor, but it is actually a Braxton Hicks contraction. These contractions happen when your brain sends messages to your body to prepare for labor. In response, your body contracts the muscles in your uterus to help get ready for your baby's eventual arrival."
The good thing about Braxton-Hicks contractions is that they are usually not very painful. Most moms describe them as a "tightening." Donna D. said hers "were very strong but they weren't painful. They took my breath away becausemy stomach went rock hard... You will know the difference when the time comes." Krista H. agrees that you don't have to worry whether you will recognize the difference between Braxton-Hicks and the real thing: "Braxton Hicks FEEL like contractions, but unlike actual contractions, will go away if you get up and move around. Real contractions don't subside with movement."
This article in no way means to trivialise pain during pregnancy. Uncomfortable, slightly painful aspects of being pregnant come with the territory, but it is always a good idea to contact your doctor if you are worried about any pain you are experiencing. Seek medical treatment right away for any severe pain that does not go away. Persistent pain can be a sign that something is wrong, and only a medical professional can truly rule out a problem. [For more information, see 7 Pregnancy Warning Signs at WebMD.]
This information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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