Education Institute

Learning at home and in hospital

  • Learning promotes wellbeing and development, so it is important to engage your child in learning activities whenever possible throughout their treatment journey. There are many ways to keep young people engaged in education while they are away from school or kindergarten. Keep your child motivated by involving family, friends and hospital staff. Try to maintain some of the usual routines and activities that your child would be involved in at school or kindergarten. Make learning opportunities fun through games, creativity and hands-on experiences. 

    Try some of these simple activities at home to promote literacy and numeracy development.


    • Journal writing 
    • Share your favourite rhymes, stories, songs and games or make up your own 
    • Share family stories, memories and look at family photos and videos together
    • Keep a diary with important dates, reminders, birthdays 
    • Read with or to your child from a range of different texts
    • Visit libraries to borrow new books, magazines and resources
    • Listen to podcasts and audio-books 
    • Make photo albums and scrapbooks
    • Send letters and emails 
    • Watch films and documentaries
    • Write film and book reviews 
    • Research an interesting topic and create a presentation, poster or report 
    • Creative story writing 
    • Literacy games and apps on iPads and devices 
    • Discuss issues in the news and debate ideas with family and friends 
    • Plan family events, holidays or activities 
    • Make a movie or presentation to show classmates 
    • Visit museums, galleries, parks, zoos, libraries and cultural centres 
    • Learn a new skill with your child such as another language, sewing or painting 


    • Play board games, puzzles, quizzes and card games 
    • Problem solving challenges 
    • Find opportunities to practise counting through everyday activities such as cutting fruit or setting the table
    • Create a shop or cafe and role play working in a shop 
    • Create patterns using objects or colours in drawings
    • Estimate, compare and measure the size and capacity of different household objects 
    • Use a height chart to record the heights of family and friends 
    • Play numeracy and Maths games and apps on iPads or devices 
    • Make decorations for a hospital room or special occasion 
    • Design and build models using Lego, blocks or recycled materials 
    • Borrow numeracy resources and books from school or kindergarten
    • Involve your child in cooking, shopping and budgeting 
    • Create timetables, timelines and journey planners 
    • Design and create your own board game or card games with rules and scoring systems
    • Learn to code using online apps and programs 

    Online learning tools 


    Tutoring can be an effective way to help students who have fallen behind their peers due to illness and long term absence from formal education. Private tuition can be very expensive and is not an option for many families. Before spending money on private tutoring speak to your teachers about whether your child will benefit from tutoring and in which learning areas. There may be free or more affordable services that you can access through your school or local community. 

    • Enlist the help of your extended family, friends, neighbours and people in your network who may be willing to offer their time to help with homework.
    • University students and recent VCE graduates often provide tutoring at a discounted rate.
    • Many schools offer 'Homework Help' or supported study groups, staffed by teachers after school. 
    • Local libraries and community centres often provide free homework help or volunteer-run tutoring programs for school-aged students. 
    • Find out if your school subscribes to online learning tools such as  Khan Academy or  Edrolo.
    • Search for tutorials and videos for specific topics on Youtube and  TedEd.

    Ronald McDonald Learning Program (RMLP) 

    A national program that assists school-aged children with serious illnesses and injuries to catch up on missed education following treatment and recovery. Contact the RMLP directly or ask your RCH teacher if your child could be eligible.