Updated: Apr 17, 2020
Many parents have expressed feelings of being overwhelmed and anxious with the task of educating their children at home. We are here to help! ❤️ Remember, when your children were toddlers and preschoolers you were homeschooling them. Older children are not that different.
As someone who has spent the past 20 years as an educator and one year homeschooling my own children, I can tell you that the worst thing you could do right now is to try to re-create a traditional school day in your home! I recommend holding off on those printable worksheets. Instead, consider going for a snowshoe or opening up the costume bin or dusting off the board games. Give everyone (yourself included) some time to adjust.
I also suggest that you take the time to check in with each other. Your children, even the little ones, hear the conversations we have and the tone of our voices when we speak. They know we are acting differently even if we aren't over-reacting and they know that it's a pretty big deal that school is closed.
With my own elementary-aged children, I have been supervising a research project on the pandemic that has sparked incredible discussions and debates about world history and geography, map-reading, politics, hygiene, empathy, social responsibility and how to tell if an internet source is reliable or not. They asked questions about the number of doctors versus potential patients and we dove into some meaningful math equations using charts and pictures to come up with different hypothetical scenarios. When the topic is interesting and relevant to children, the learning opportunities are endless. I have one child who struggles with anxiety at the best of times. Feeling empowered to do his own research and find the answers to his questions has helped him feel more in control.
Most importantly, take this time to encourage your children to pursue their interests and passions. Explore, discover, wonder and play! Your children will not “fall behind” if you read with them every day and find creative ways to practice writing and number sense a few times a week.
To help parents who need it, we will be starting a (free) series of hands-on, interest-based projects and activities that you can do with your kids at home.
Follow our blog or Facebook page for our Changemaker resources, videos and activities.
Image credit: @sylviaduckworth