Were you ready to homeschool your kids?
Starting to homeschool your kids was probably not one of your 2020 goals and it wasn’t mine either.
My First Week of Homeschool
I knew I had this.
My kids get good grades.
They’re really responsible so this homeschool thing should be a no brainer.
Well, I assumed (I should know better) that everyone was working independently which was recommended by their teachers. But little did I know, there was so much more going on or not going on at the end of that first week.
By the end of the day, I was sick of having people talking in my house. It was starting to get to me.
And their grades showed it!
How To Homeschool Your Kids From A Non-Homeschooling South Florida Mom
No offense to my already amazing homeschooling parents out there but a lot of your advice didn’t help me at first.
You homeschool moms didn’t get me.
- I was a mom who does a carline.
- A Mom who has packed lunches every school day for the last 8 months.
- A mom who works out of the home and has the house to herself seven hours of the day.
I finally gave myself some grace and decided to take it day by day. I stopped trying to control and create our old life and make a new normal as everyone was saying.
I’ve been writing down tips and ideas that I’ve learned from myself and my kids each week through this. It may not work for everyone, but I hope it helps some one out there.
HAVE SUNDAY FAMILY MEETINGS
Each Sunday sitting around the breakfast table or dinner table, we’ve held our Sunday Family Meeting sharing our schedules for the week.
Now our meetings are a bit different (there maybe Bloody Mary’s involved) but instead of just lessons and work, we come up with family fun night ideas like:
- games to play
- binging on Survivor episodes
- watching classic 80’s movies
- making Smores outside
- planning a stay-at-home trip to Walt Disney World.
This gives everyone something to look forward to.
INCLUDE YOUR KIDS IN THE DAILY SCHEDULE
Remember, your kids just had the same schedule for the last 8 months. They knew every part of their day, every day of the week. Now, they have no idea what is going on except for the scheduled Zoom meetings with their teachers.
Each evening I meet separately with each of my children to go through their schedule making sure to add:
- snack breaks
- craft breaks
- action Breaks
- school ends
- walk around the block
- TV time
So far it’s working and the ideas change daily.
CREATE HOMESCHOOL SPACE
They knew their school schedule more than anything. I realized my 3rd grader rotated around her classroom for different subjects. So when we started homeschooling, sitting at a desk or the kitchen table all day was driving her crazy.
I created a space for her at my desk and where she sits close and asks me questions or shows me her work while I’m working.
Flexible seating was also a huge part of her classroom. So sitting on bean bag, on a piano bench have been some options.
Here are some other flexible seating options.
PUT THE SCHEDULE ON THE FRIDGE
We decided what worked the best was writing down individual daily schedules on whiteboards on the refrigerator. Most days I was able to coordinate lunch and recess at the same time for all of us. But somedays it didn’t work out due to the zoom schedule which was okay.
Here is a sample of our schedule for a 3rd through 6th grader.
BE FLEXIBLE WITH THE SCHEDULE
Each one of my kids is given weekly lessons, homework and Zoom meetings which everything has to be completed by Sunday at 8 PM.
It was stressful at first. I found myself being fixated on them staying on tasks and getting everything done before 2:30 PM.
I remembered, in school, they would have a lesson and have time to do some of the work.
Now, their day consists of a zoom here and there, checking Google Classroom, going through emails and lists goes on. They have to literally change their lifestyle after having the same schedule for the last 8 months.
So having a super strict homeschool schedule every day wasn’t working for us. I decided to breathe and back off.
Because of the coronavirus situation, some days were going to be better than others better and sometimes they are motivated more than others.
BE THEIR GUIDE
My 3rd grader had me totally fooled. I asked if she need any help and she reassured me everything was good.
Let’s put it this way. I pulled up her grades and it was not good. She was upset and she was afraid to ask me for help. I mean I am her mom. Not her school teacher.
In the classroom environment, I realized that her teacher would have probably gone through the lesson and the directions. Then a few kids would ask questions that would probably answer any questions she might have.
So we started the week fresh with lots of hugs and some help plus attention. It was a much better morning as I read through the directions with her like a teacher would and we talked it out.
Trust me! I’m not doing the work, but I’m giving reassurance and making her show me everything after each subject is complete. She just needs to know someone cares and this is not for nothing.
DON’T DISMISS THEIR FEELINGS
Almost every day I tear up around 4:00 PM or at night watching TV when I see a brand that has shifted into Corona Virus commercials. So I can’t imagine what our children are going through.
My 9-year-old is struggling with the fact they may not go back to school this year. Now they are not!
She was looking forward to so many school events and after school activities. We had a real heart to heart about how she was feeling. She was pretty open and pretty angry. I told her that was completely normal. There will be good days and bad and that’s okay.
Checking on each one of them daily is a good thing!
GIVE YOUR KIDS A BREAK
I think every other day is up and down. Somedays my kids walk up to me and just ask for a break. The other day I told mine to just be done for the day. This is not worth getting upset over and so we would play a game.
RELY ON YOUR TEACHERS
Our teachers are amazing and are constantly their for our kids. If you think your child needs help, or another friendly face, then set-up a special Zoom for your child. It really does help!
TAKE A BREAK
Between the cooking, cleaning and possibly trying to work from home, the day can be fast and intense.
If you don’t have any help then you need to make sure you are taking a break.
Facetime or zoom with some friends. Hide in the bathroom for 10 minutes to just to breathe. Walk outside for some fresh air and get away from technology.
HAVE SOME SPONTANEOUS FUN
Tik Tok has become our recess time creativity. Learning dances or just making up our own Tik Toks has been a fun way to relieve any tension.
Use your own account. You never know what you are going to stumble upon. It’s not monitored!
GIVE LOTS OF HUGS
Scientists say that giving another person support through touch can reduce the stress of the person being comforted. It can even reduce the stress of the person doing the comforting – healthline.com
On average, my children randomly walk up and ask for a hug at least 5 to 10 times a day. And you know what… I’ll take one every time.