As the pandemic continues to rage on this year, more and more people have been homeschooling their children due to school closures. Some parents have been doing this expertly for years, while others have been thrown by the responsibility of teaching their offspring. So, while we don’t know how much longer this will go on for, the school holidays are an excellent opportunity to brush up on homeschooling tips for the next year!
- Set up a classroom
Creating a workspace at home – no matter the size of your home – is a great way to help the process of homeschooling. This ‘zoning’ technique helps you allocate an area for ‘work’ that is separate from the areas for ‘play. You can buy school & university furniture from the internet and transform a whole room, or just a corner of a kitchen or living room, so your child knows where they will be going to ‘school’ every day.
- Stick to a schedule
Structuring the day is invaluable when homeschooling. It can be useful to keep the routine as close as you can to your child’s school schedule (if they had one) to help them settle into their new school setting. A routine can help both you and your child to have focus and direction in the day. Try writing it out on a whiteboard so that it’s visible to your child, ensuring that there are no arguments about ‘what happens next’.
- Quality, not quantity
It is – of course – crucial that your child is learning while they’re being homeschooled. However, now is not the time to panic that they’re not getting through worksheets quick enough, or you’re not spending 10 hours a week improving their math skills, for example. Particularly with younger children, the important thing is that they’re excited about learning and staying calm. If possible, keep up a line of communication between you and your teacher, so you can check-in and make sure your child is learning what they need.
- Get moving
You’ll never get the best out of a child if they’ve been sat in a chair for five hours. So, as important as movement is for physical health, it’s also crucial for positive mental health! Make time in the schedule for regular wriggle breaks, and make sure not to miss out on regular physical education lessons! Picking up skipping ropes and balls will come in handy.
- Limit screen time
Kids will indeed be spending more time online – working virtually with classmates, taking courses, or generally completing their work. However, it’s important not to let screen-time run away with you. By setting rules about how much time your child will spend on a device each day, you can hopefully avoid arguments later down the line.
Hopefully, you will find these tips and tricks helpful while you homeschool your child. Remember: children are resilient, and keeping them calm and happy is one of the most important things you can do right now.