With most public schools closed until the rest of the school year and classes going online, many parents are tempted to try something they may have never tried before - homeschooling. This can be a huge challenge for parents, especially for those who are working from home.
If you have just started homeschooling, you might find yourself feeling unprepared and overwhelmed with this new change. You don’t know what to do or how actually to begin.
To keep your kids engaged, we decided to pick some advice from parents who are already teaching at home and came up with a list of a few essential tips.
Make a Learning Environment
Where are you planning to conduct classes? Will it be the kitchen table? Or maybe your child already has its own desk? Moreover, will you need a blackboard or a laptop connected to the Internet?
Consider supplying yourself with all the necessary baskets, storage cabinets, and bookshelves for keeping textbooks and workbooks. Don’t make your homeschooling space feel like a traditional classroom - instead, make it feel less stressful and boring.
Desks, decorated walls with things you usually see in a regular classroom, set calendars, and schedules...all of these make it look like public school being brought at home which in turn causes a lot of pressure for kids.
Set up a Flexible Time for Learning
Yeah, you would agree that it’s good to have a daily routine, but how about being flexible with your time?
For example, why not let your kids sleep a bit later than usual and then take them outside? You’ve heard that right. Many learning opportunities happen outside as well.
According to studies, parents spend an average of 3.5 hours for homeschooling per day. This seems like a lot less than the regular 6 or 7 hours in a public school classroom. However, bear in mind that when at home, your kid is getting one-on-one teaching - instead of splitting the time with another 25 or more students. So, focus on quality, rather than quantity.
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Make the Learning Fun
Why not step up from the boring daily routine and try to help your kids learn through fun activities? With so much on their plate, even kids are feeling overwhelmed.
Fun activities such as games, quizzes, cooking food, and similar indoor plays can help your child not only learn but also establish a stronger bond with you. Spending quality time with them is vital so make sure you try out some new activities to connect with them.
You can allow them to pursue passion projects - something they haven’t had the chance to do before. Whether it is learning how to play a new instrument, painting, or decorating a treehouse, now you have plenty of time to keep them engaged and productive.
Make Use of Online Resources
With so many educational resources available online, it’s no wonder parents can provide free home education. Downloadable PDFs, lesson plans, sites, and platforms with free educational content, to name just a few. All these resources can help homeschooling parents facilitate their child’s learning skills.
Discover your child’s biggest interest and passion and then find a few resources that would work towards achieving that goal. If you think that your child has all the necessary skills to learn a new language, why not spend some time to teach them? They will be grateful later.
You can also join a few support groups where you can chat with like-minded people during this tough time. Virtual support groups can help you air your frustrations, ask questions, and look for additional resources.
Homeschooling doesn’t have to be stressful. It is necessary that kids get the right education even when the world fights a pandemic. With these tips, your kids’ learning will never stop.
You might find it challenging during the first few days of homeschooling, both for yourself and your kids. But soon you’ll realize that it’s possible to educate your children without the traditional public schools.