Childhood Education in the Era of Covid-19
Posted on July 22 2020
COVID-19 has thrown us all into a whirlpool of new experiences that we never imagined we would have to face. Homeschooling is something that most of us never considered for our children, but suddenly we’re playing the role of teacher/parent, while trying our hardest not to mess it up.
Educating from home has become the new normal, and with a lot of uncertainty as to whether schools will be opening in August, keeping our children at home may last for even longer than we had originally imagined and planned for.
Some of us are also considering keeping our children at home even if schools start running as normal. Whether this is until the end of the year or indefinitely, there’s a lot that we need to understand about homeschooling and becoming our children’s educators for the longer-term.
Homeschooling - the new normal?
Though homeschooling may still feel like an impossible feat, let’s not forget that there are around 2 million children in the US alone who are receiving their education at home. If those parents can do it successfully and out of choice, why can’t we?!
Homeschooling looks different for every family but will generally involve typical school education mixed with world experiences. It’s important to understand that what is achieved in a full day of school can be achieved at home in less than half of the time. So, don’t worry if your children are not sitting at a table and learning from a book for at least 4 hours a day - this approach will exhaust everyone and leave you ready to give up completely.
It’s a good idea to have a routine to your homeschooling day, but to keep it flexible. If your children cannot concentrate on the hour-long math work that you’ve given them, take them outside to learn about plants and nature instead. Their home is not their school, so don’t try to make it that way. Instead, follow your children’s cues to help you in preparing your day of homeschooling-this will allow everyone to enjoy it!
Approach learning as a whole-world experience. Everything is a learning opportunity and not all of it has to be done in a typical school fashion (sitting at a table, reading, writing). Let your children bake a cake and use the process to learn about measurements (math), following recipes (reading) and the baking process (science).
Going back to school
If your children go back to school, whether in person or through virtual learning, expect things to be a little strange.
Going to school, and not being able to have normal interactions with their classmates, may be quite challenging for them. Our children are used to giving hugs and handshakes, not being sure to have the sanitizer handy.
For the virtual learning aspect, they will probably be exhausted and fed up from spending every day in front of a computer screen. The differences in educational environments may be challenging for many. Give them all the support that they need and lots of downtime during the evening and weekend.
You might find that you’ve got a new-found interest to hear about everything that they are learning at school! Stay involved so that you can help them with their homework and give any extra assistance needed.
Whatever decision you make should be the decision that is best for your family dynamic. There is so much uncertainty and the education of our children shouldn’t be one of the things that’s up in the air. No matter which way you go, just remember “You’ve got this mama!”
Until next time Kuties!