Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world, – a famous quote by Nelson Mandela.
1. CREATE YOUR OWN SCHEDULE
One of the best parts about homeschooling is that you don’t have to be confined to a specific routine. Be flexible and you’ll soon figure out a schedule that works best for your family. Feel free to plan around your mealtimes, work schedule or even your kid’s favorite TV program.
2. DESIGNATE A STUDY SPACE
If possible, try to find a place in your home that you can dedicate specifically for studying, suggests NPR. Separating your living spaces from your learning space is an easy way to get your kids to change gears when it’s time to focus.
3. SET REASONABLE GOALS AND EXPECTATIONS
This is one of the most important tips for homeschooling. If your child is struggling to stay motivated or getting frustrated with their schoolwork, take a minute to evaluate the expectations that have been set for them. Remember that each child learns differently, and that the current circumstances may be adding a layer of fear, uneasiness or loneliness. Talk with your child and their teacher and determine a plan that works best for everyone.
4. BE PATIENT
While you’re used to powering through multiple tasks in a day, it’s important to consider that the rate at which your child learns may be different from yours or from other children. When assisting with schoolwork, try to let your child guide the pace for learning.
5. SET ASIDE TIME FOR CREATIVITY AND EXERCISE
Social distancing can take a toll on both our bodies and our minds.
6. STAY CONNECTED WITH TEACHERS
In most cases, your kid’s teachers are just an email away. Don’t be afraid to reach out when your child needs a little extra help, encouragement or clarification on an assignment, suggests K12.
7. LEAN ON THE EXPERTS
Let’s be honest – we’re all a little rusty on our math skills. If you’re struggling with how to homeschool on a certain topic, know that there are an abundance of free online resources that can help.
8. SAVE TIME FOR LUNCH
Mealtime can be something that gets easily overlooked or rushed, but doing so could potentially make things harder for you in the long run. Set aside at least 30 minutes for lunch, and be sure to serve healthy, filling foods to help curb hunger and avoid the need for more afternoon snack breaks.
9. SET LIMITS ON ELECTRONICS
With e-learning in place, kids of all ages are spending more time on their devices. And even though it’s for a good cause, when you stack that with their regular usage it can add up to an awful lot of screen time. Take a look at your kid’s daily activity, and make sure to set a reasonable limit.
10. CONSIDER OFFERING REWARDS
Most of us don’t hand out incentives when our kids complete their ordinary school assignments – but these aren’t ordinary days. Consider offering small rewards to encourage participation and completion of assignments, suggests K12. Incentives such as an at-home movie night, one-on-one parent/child time or family game night are great options.
11. ADD LIFE SKILLS TO YOUR CURRICULUM
As you spend more time at home, don’t forget the value of teaching some basic life skills. Now can be a great opportunity for older kids and teens to help with everyday tasks such as cleaning, doing the laundry or cooking. Younger kids can help with tidying up or you can use this time to practice personal care skills like fastening buttons and tying shoes. These types of learning can be just as valuable as skills taught in the classroom.
12. GIVE YOURSELF A BREAK
You’ve got a lot on your plate right now. Despite how you may feel, chances are you’re doing a much better job than you realize. Don’t forget to schedule a little time each day for yourself – even if that means waiting until the kids have gone to bed or allowing them to have a little extra TV time.
Putting even just a few of these tips for homeschooling into practice is a great first step towards finding balance in your new routine. Give yourself credit for all the hard work that you’ve done, and remember that we’re all in this together. With a little patience and creativity, we’re sure you’ll learn how to homeschool in a way that works for you and your family.