School closures and hybrid learning have become the new normal for so many parents during the COVID-19 pandemic. As the months have ticked by, the amount of talk show appearances from experts on the subject to an outrageous amount of homeschooling memes circulating the internet have clearly demonstrated that the struggles of homeschool are real. When every child, teacher, and home is different there are clearly no directions on homeschooling that “fits all” but here some helpful reminders for all parents who have been faced with wearing the occasionally teacher hat:
Avoid social comparison: We’re looking at you Pinterest- with your perfect color-coded homeschooling schedule templates and shiny craft ideas. Not everything that you see out there on the internet (or even what’s been recommended by your child’s teacher) is going to be a good fit for your family. Remember what we’re all trying to teach our children? It’s not about being perfect, just do your best with what you have and that will be more than enough for you and your homeschoolers.
Whining about boredom can be a good thing: Children are used to being stimulated at school all day long. But, when you’re the teacher and you have 3 different meetings and a deadline you need to meet from home- there might be some sighs and whines of boredom that are actually okay. Children can learn to be more imaginative, independent, and creative when they get bored. With the right parameters set in place, it can be the perfect time for exploration.
Read, read, read! Let your child pick the majority of the stories. Letting them explore their own interests is more important than making sure they’re always hitting the right reading level. And, take advantage of online story videos and e-books.
You’re not alone if you hate math: And, good news! There are online resources to help you here too! Also, encourage kids to make flashcards that will help them stay sharp on current math skills.
Home economics 101 anyone? With all the time at home, the ability to teach proper hygiene, cooking, house cleaning, pet care, etc. is at an all-time high! These are important life skill lessons that schools often can’t focus on that your children can reap the benefits of years from now.
Get outside and play! The great outdoors is its own teacher and a great classroom for messy art activities, games, and science- even if it is a little chilly right now. You can share what you're doing with other parents that are part of the St. Andrew's family by posting your projects on your social media and using #SAREPORT
Model: Everyone, including children, are feeling the prolonged pressures of the pandemic. Demonstrating to your child emotional and mental health during times of stress is important for them to see and learn. You can teach them the proper ways to deal with their big feelings and help deal with some of your own in the process