MNO Produces ‘Learning at Home’ Kits

learning kitContents of the MNO's Early Learning and
Childcare's Learning at Home Kit

When schools across the province closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Métis Nation of Ontario (MNO) staff and educators knew it was time to get creative in their approach to continued learning.

Amanda Pont-Shanks, MNO Manager of Early Learning and Childcare and Brian Tucker, MNO Director of Education and Training, brainstormed ways to support Métis children and their families during a time of social distancing. The idea of “Learning at Home Kits” evolved from these discussions, and they’ve been a hit with Métis early learners and their families.

“We realized many parents may not have the resources at home for in-home learning,” said Pont-Shanks. “With schools closed, and summer programs being cancelled, we recognized many families had to come up with alternative arrangements and we wanted to provide some help.”

Funded through the MNO Early Learning and Child Care (ELCC) program the Learning at Home Kits feature a wide array of hands-on learning tools for children — including: building blocks, Indigenous animal puzzles, a variety of painting and art supplies, and a collection of books featuring stories, animals, and art.

Households with children (0-12) who have applied to the MNO COVID-19 Family Support Program are eligible to receive a kit by emailing elccsupport@metisnation.org. Families can also be enrolled in the Métis book program, a partnership with the Dolly Parton Imagination Library which sends free books to children under 5.

“Our family just received the learning kit for our 5-year-old son Joël yesterday and what a wonderful surprise this was for him. We are overwhelmed by the contents of this kit,” said MNO Citizen Christine Fortin. “The generosity of this gesture has made us proud and feeling blessed to be a part of this great Métis family.”

So far, over 400 kits have been shipped to families across Ontario. The MNO is thrilled with the kit’s positive reception, and the many works of art created by the Métis children. A limited number of kits are still available!

Reminder: More information on available MNO COVID-19 supports can be found at: /news-media/news/covid-19-support-programs/.

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