Since schools are shutdown until mid-April (or longer), full-time working parents like myself have been asked to take a different approach to helping with our kid’s education. Basically we’re balancing homeschool as a work-from-home mom.
Our school district implemented an e-Learning technique to help keep our kids on track. Teachers are emailing lessons and making videos for the kids to watch and learn from. This is tremendously helpful for parents who are trying to juggle working remotely and teaching.
I will be honest, the first day was exciting for everyone but by day 3, we were all feeling a little overwhelmed. Thankfully, we found a rhythm and everything is flowing smoothly. Here are some tips to make schooling from home work for everyone, especially the working mom.
Maintain a Routine
While it is tempting to sleep in and start the day whenever, we have continued to start our days as we normally did before the school shutdowns. We wake up, brush our teeth, get dressed for the day and we all sit down at the table and get to work. The boys work on their lessons for the day and I log-in to work and start answering emails. A routine helps the kids know what to expect each day. And me too.
Utilize e-Learning Material
Teachers in our school district are sending updates every week for our kids to watch. The best way to make sure they are continuously learning and exercising their brains is to use the learning materials being sent.
Stay in Touch with the Teachers and School
While it may seem like a vacation from school, it is far from such. Stay in touch with the kids’ teachers and let them know how each child is doing. Ask questions, request teaching tips and share photos of your kid actively learning. I am sure the teachers love getting the updates.
Read Every Day
Reading every day builds vocabulary, comprehension skills and confidence in young kids. I let my kids pick out the books they would like to read to keep their interest.
Depending on the book, we will act them out, use funny sounds and give alternate endings to the book. The more fun kids have while reading, the more they will continue to want to read.
Our kids’ school uses iReady to help with ELA (English Language Arts) and Mathematics. For 46 minutes a day, they practice Reading, English and Math assessments. The assessments are interactive and help the kids gain a better understanding of each subject.
Fun Learning Games
To help the boys decompress after hours of homeschooling, I let them play “games” on their iPads. These are games that are not the typical video games. They are grade appropriate learning apps filled with over 12 games that cover topics from reading, to geography.
Create a Fun Craft for Each Day
After the kids’ lessons, they stop to have lunch and come back to a craft. We have done 1 or 2 crafts each day they have been out of school. Most of the crafts I found from a simple Google or Pinterest search. When looking for crafts, I look for the ones I already have the materials for so we do not have to go out in public to get anything. We are practicing social distancing.
Fresh air and exercise are the perfect way to end the day after homeschooling and working for hours. We all go outside and soak up the sun for a while. I think this is the part of homeschooling the kids look forward too the most. We call it “recess” but it is really my way of burning off energy before they come in for a bath, dinner and bed.
Working moms, how is schooling from home going for you? What tips do you have? Click here for more tips from a homeschool mom.