Right now, every day must feel like a Saturday or Sunday to children; not being in the classroom, moms and dads being home all day, and having Netflix sitting so close to you at all times.
However, it is important that children still stay in routine despite everything that is currently going on. I thought that I would put together some hints and tips on how we, as parents, can attempt to keep our children in a routine:
Routine While Homeschooling:
Make sure children stick to their bedtime and aren’t staying up too late. They may think they can stay up as late as they normally can on a weekend, but you need to remind them that it’s still a weekday, just spent at home.
If your children are struggling with getting to sleep due to everything going on, then consider treating them to something shiny and new such as a new cuddly toy to sleep with or a new mattress to make bedtime a little bit more exciting and comfortable. Happy Beds sell a great range of single memory-foam mattresses that are great for smaller beds, and aren’t too expensive. Maybe a little bedroom makeover will make them excited for bedtime again, even if you just rearrange the furniture.
- Educational Resources
For parents that are struggling with homeschooling by themselves, break up the day by outsourcing some of the classes. For example, if you want your children to partake in an exercise/PE class, then Joe Wicks is hosting a PE class daily on his YouTube channel, specifically aimed at children. The perfect time to leave them to it and make yourselves a much-needed coffee to set up the day or join in to get your daily exercise too.
ZD Net have put together a list of some of the best resources available online, so it’s worth making the most of these so that you’re not trying to think of lesson plans and math questions by yourself. We have been using loads of online resources, printed out so the kids can work through them.
Some schools around the UK are still supplying work – so it is worth checking in with teachers to see if they’re able to help, or to see whether they can supply the curriculum so you know you’re helping kids with the right stuff. When in doubt, thank goodness for google, I am no teacher either so can relate.
- Take Advantage of the ‘One Walk a Day’ Rule
Children are used to spending their lunches and break times in the playground and outdoors. You should use the lunch hours that you give your children to stroll around the block with you. This will keep them from getting cabin fever and also, tire them out a little bit ready for their post-school baths and bedtimes.
Create a structure for each day so that your child or children know what they’re doing each day. This can include an hour of English, an hour of mathematics, and so on. This will also help you, so you aren’t going completely off track making your children do way more than they normally do of the same subject.
Doing this will ensure the children don’t get bored and know how their day is going to be spent. Here is an example timetable from Teaching Times if you wanted a free at-home print out: https://www.teachingideas.co.uk/planning/editable-timetables.
Using the term ‘home’ work seems a bit strange, as all work is currently being done at home. However, it’s important that you’re still setting your children homework to do in their free time.
Don’t set any more or any less than they’d normally get. You don’t want them to get overwhelmed, but you also don’t want them to lack and then struggle when we eventually do get back into a normal routine.
Print out sheets from BBC Bitesize, or set a number of questions that they have to answer. Reward children that get good marks with treats, such as a snack. In our school they do house points so we have continued to do house points at home. Or we assign projects that the school would have had them do anyways so they are sticking to their own curriculum, like building volcanoes.
Most importantly while it seems overwhelming and stressful in this time of the unknown, keeping a routine will help you as much it will help the children. There will be no worrying about what comes next once you set into a homeschool routine balance with the children.