A friend of mine just asked me for some ideas since I homeschooled my kid for a while and we both lived to tell. That’s just coming from my n=1 experience. Remember that I am not an expert 🙂
- Some days are really hard ! And let’s not forget that the context we are in is not normal at all. Yes, the sun will rise tomorrow and things will get better; I am deeply convinced that it will work out fine. But things are going to be bumpy. It’s a given that some of us will receive bad news of some sorts when the kids are nearby so keep in mind that how you react to any situation is how your kid will react to it as well.
- Kids learn a lot faster by themselves so don’t go with the usual school plan. That was the biggest eye opener for me: I had used some of the French curriculum based on what they were doing in school (which is already more than we do in the US) and still she’d go through the lessons faster than expected. So plan ahead. And also plan on them being bored when they get back to school.
- Khan institute is really good for math and grammar (and coding)
- After she was done with a lesson I’d ask her to teach me that lesson; it’s a trick from grad school and it will help you see if anyone has really understood a concept.
- Stay sane and study things you like ! By this I mean that you do not have to follow what the curriculum truly is. For example, what matters is that they read so if you like to read travel guides then go ahead and read this.
- Applied math > theoretical math. You know what sucks? Learning measurements and counting….you know what’s fun? Using the same principles when cooking or home decorating or IoT. An electric circuit is much more fun with a light and small battery than on a piece of paper!
- Give them space…not only will this give you space but it will force them to learn to be autonomous, which is not a bad thing in the long run. Actually some chores around the house ain’t bad either.
- Set a schedule and review it the day before. This also helps in terms of them knowing when they have to “do their own thing” while you do yours.
- Dress for work. I’m not kidding. It’s really tempting to relax the dress-code when working from home so if they see you dressed up (3 piece suit optional) it’ll be easier to ask them to do the same. Exception (and jealousy points) if you are on a boat or by the sea!!!
- If you can have a dedicated “school” zone; even if it’s just a small desk, it goes a long way in helping them switch between “home” and “study” mode.
- Here is the part that sucks…monitor screen time. I know it’s easy and convenient but it’s really evil. And, to that end, if you are doing to let them use a computer, make sure you properly put up some of the parental firewalls that are available. Schools have them on their chrome books, most of us do not have them
- Virtual playdates are awesome but make sure you set them up the way you’d do a real one, meaning setup the computer in their room and get out of the way 🙂
If I can help in any way let me know…and yes, I’ll be putting the Egyptology hack back on again during the shutdown and maybe do a fun short course for those who are interested !!!
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