Sunday, March 15, 2020

Doing School at Home (for now)

A few friends contacted me and asked for my best homeschool advice, so here goes.

This is not the list I've seen others posting with curriculum ideas or Homeschool 101. This is reality and practical advice.

1) "Be Not Afraid" For most of you, this will pass and it is just a phase. You can do anything, especially when it comes to your children!  You know them and love them. That is what makes a great teacher. Just love them! Relationship is always first.
You have support from your schools, just do your best.

2) Boundaries for Everyone!
This does not mean you have to have a strict schedule. It does mean you need to set the expectation for everyone that there will need to be alone time and quiet time. Yes, mom needs to pee without being interrupted!  (Still working on that here!)

3) Teach your kids something you love!
Seriously, these make the best family memories. I love to teach my kids about Art and History or reading great books together. My husband couldn't be happier teaching the kids to fix something, doing a physics experiment, or teaching math. It is a gift for your kids to see the things you enjoy!
This is also be a time to teach them how to make a favorite recipe, balance a checkbook, talk about faith, or other things that in general there seems no be no time for.

4) Be Flexible!
Things are going to change for each of us over the next few weeks, so don't be too hard on yourself. If someone in your family gets ill, that perfect schedule will fly out the window (as well it should).
School At home will probably take less time than a school day, as your child will work at their pace. That's ok!  So fill your days with some fun too. 

5) Take breaks individually and together.
One of my children sets a timer in between every subject for 10 mins so he can play. Others, prefer to get it all done so they have their afternoons free. Just because school only has 1 recess doesn't mean you can't have 5!  Go out and play with the kids, you need exercise too! No matter how their days are scheduled, there is still plenty of time for alone and together play.

6) Play Games
Make playing a game part of your day. It can be card games, board games, tag, races, tic-tac-toe, anything!

7) Come up with Challenges or Theme days.
I'm working on a list of ideas to share such as Lego challenges, Family book club, Art Contests, and more. This will help use that extra creativity and fight boredom.

8) Get outside if you can.
Go for a walk or camp in your own backyard. You can do schoolwork outside, in a tree, on the playground set, or in a tent!  Make it fun!

9) Play Music.
Instead of yelling for the kids to do certain things like chores, pick songs as cues. A good upbeat dance some is great for chores. Can the room get cleaned up before the end of "Bohemian Rhapsody"?

10) Talk to your kids
Everyone is frustrated and confused. Talk to your kids about how they feel. Stay positive and just be there for them.
Watch movies and talk about them? What did they think about why characters made certain choices? Do they think it was right?
Read books together! This will create lots of conversation.

Overall, be a MOM!  Of course there will be bad days. There always are no matter the situation.
Pray for patience and understanding.
Stay positive and be kind.