My brother-in-law was telling my sister that since she works from home, he thinks it will be a good idea if they homeschool their children going forward. (lol)
People are predicting that homeschooling will become a trend. Hhmm, as an entrepreneur and working mother, juggling work and family, I am like “please give me full blown school any day pretty please”.
Has it been all bad with the kids at home in the past 5 months? No!! I have enjoyed the bonding time, teaching them all the stuff I hadn’t gotten round to doing. But would I exchange school for homeschooling? My personal answer is a resounding No. I love my kids but full-time homeschooling is a No No for me.
Most parents across all income groups are struggling with homeschooling. Apart from the challenges, most parents are not satisfied with the level of engagement and “live” teaching/learning that is being done.
For working parents, school solves two problems – it provides childcare for the time you are at work and it provides an education. For this group of parents, homeschooling is not a solution.
So while we patiently wait for schools to open, we will make lemonade from lemon with homeschooling. But, if you are considering homeschooling, here are 5 quick tips to help you as you “homeschool”
- Ensure you have a routine and be consistent – Similar to school setting a clearly defined and documented routine would make a world of difference. To ensure your children adhere to the routine, involve them in designing the routine.
- Be flexible with “school duration” – Most people are most productive in the mornings while some are late risers. Let your schedule be aligned to your child’s needs. And though typical school duration is 6 hours, you can decide on how much time works for your child and how much breaks are required. It doesn’t have to be 6 hours – can be 2, 4 or 5.
- Have a dedicated corner for “’school” – My older son wants to do online school laying on his bed or the couch. But having a place that put your child in the right mind frame for a bit of serious work is important. So, ensure a dedicated space devoid of distractions like TV is planned for homeschooling
- Don’t reinvent the wheel – There are lots of resources that align to curriculum that cover lesson plans, activities on most core subjects for preschool to secondary. Don’t try to recreate yours. Leverage on these depending on which curriculum you are following. It is important to ensure the learning objectives are clear as you explore available resources.
- Variety is the spice of life – It is important to use various mediums to homeschool. From reading books to online videos classes to podcast to worksheets to educational games to practical activities or google searches. Depending on the age of your child, ensure you don’t make learning boring or monotonous.
As you homeschool, remember that social interaction is a key developmental area for your child. It is important to ensure your child is not lonely and is getting needed social interactions through virtual playdates or chats.
Titi Adewusi is Co-Founder, 9IJAKIDS; an EdTech company that has developed an online and mobile platform that helps children ages 3-13 years excel in their academics using interactive fun games. She is also the Chairperson of Bethesda – a non for-profit organisations that provides free education to children in poor communities in Lagos and Ogun State. She is passionate about children learning 21st Century skills to prepare them for the future.
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