Back to Home-Schooling. Help for Parents.
With localised school closures for primary and staggered returns for secondary, what can we learn from the first lock-down that might help this next few weeks?
Undoubtedly, this round of school closures could pose a significant challenge. Whilst many parents were furloughed in lockdown 1, this time, parents are back at work and are faced with doing two jobs: their own, and home-schooling.
This, we know, has raised heckles. It can seem like a mammoth challenge to keep a business/a job afloat and make sure that your children are getting a good education. With schools delivering varied quality, the tips below could help, whether you are asked to complete tasks via Google classroom, or whether your child has all day live lessons.
- Create a quiet space in the home for studying- a desk in a bedroom or a space where children can be uninterrupted. Distractions both in and out of school can take away from learning and focus
2. Make a timetable- especially if devices have to be shared. This could stop arguments and worry about when devices are available.
3. If its easier, use the weekend, when you aren’t working, to home- school.
4. If your child cannot / will not complete a task, begin to ask ‘what do you think you can manage?’ or ‘how else could you present your learning?’ This is especially important for children with neurodiversities eg: dyslexia/ADHD etc. Sometimes making a video or designing a concept map can show understanding just as effectively as writing an essay.
5. Break a task down into smaller chunks and write it in a list- this can prove a very helpful stepping stone for children as they work their way through a task. Some children can’t get started because the task seems too enormous.
6. Measure energy levels- the wonderful thing about learning at home is tuning into your child’s energy and utilising when they are at their peak and noticing when they are too tired for learning to be effective.
7. Have some backup ideas that are still educational but allow you to work:
- Planet Earth Videos
- Virtual Museum Tours
- Art work
- Use the garden for science learning:
- Audio Books- don’t underestimate the power of a book to teach language, writing skills and imagination.
- Create a book using images and imagination- Book Creator is great for this and highly engaging.
- Create a show/ puppet show
- Make a Stop Motion/Claymation/Small word story
8. Take a look at Common Sense Media’s List of educational apps- some highly engaging.
9. Children are highly motivated when researching something of their own interest. We call this intrinsic motivation. If school work is too much or the afternoon seems too long then ask them to research as much as possible and record details about an area of interest- they could make a film, design a collage, make a t-shirt, design a mind map or make a news-cast about it.
We love the following resources:
10. Communicate with the teacher- let them know if it is a struggle- they may be able to provide tasks that are at the level needed.
12. Get a tutor. We can offer tutors who are available to check in, guide your children through the work set by your child’s teacher, feedback on the work and check it is completed. Many children who did not like group live lessons have thrived with online 1:1 support. Call us today and let us create a plan that works for you.
Company Director and Educational Consultant