Homeschooling? I’m lost!
Parents around the world are faced with a challenge that we didn’t anticipate. All of a sudden our children are home for weeks. Schools are closed. The panic sets in ‘How will they learn?’ and ‘How do we continue what they were learning in school?’ Many school systems are trying to find ways to make that happen and will do their best to share ideas. Keep in mind, unless you are your child’s classroom teacher, you won’t recreate their classroom. You did, however, teach them many skills before their formal education began.
Remember the stories you read about colors and animals? How about when you were shopping and asked your child to get a certain fruit? What about when you walked up steps and counted as you climbed? Now let’s take those skills you already have and apply it to the current times. Before you begin with ideas below, have your children make a list of what they were learning about in school. Go through each subject while it’s still fresh.
- Make a meal together. Have your child measure the items, but use a tool like ‘The Big G’ and tell them they have to measure a different way. For example, instead of saying you need to 2 cups have them figure out that it is the same as 1 pint.
- As you make your outdoor plans, watch the news and find out the current and afternoon temperature. Decide you will take that walk when the temperature reaches a certain number. Place a thermometer outside, print one out or use this interactive online version, and teach your child how to read it. Add some math by having them figure out the difference in the high and low. Extend this skill by checking the temperature over the next few days.
- The tv will be on. Watch a movie with your kids and turn it off every 20 minutes. This is where you can work on reading skills. Discuss how the characters are connected and their stories are developing. Summarize the part you have watched. Make a prediction as to how the story may go. If you have paper, any size, get out some writing instruments and write it down. Revisit the paper at the next break and write in a new color. You can also print out story maps to guide you.
- Pull out the building toys-Legos, blocks, train sets, etc. As their imagination soars, refer to the list of what they were learning. Use one of those skills to create what they were taught. For example, the latest history lesson was Westward Expansion. Using the building items, recreate the journey to include the people, transportation and terrain.
- Want a larger project to include everyone, build a Rube Goldberg machine. Remember the long domino trails that would get knocked down one by one, this would be same type of activity but so much more fun. What is the goal of your machine? What do you want it to accomplish? Here are some examples to get you started.