One thing many working parents have realised recently is that homeschooling is no easy feat—especially when you’re also working from home.
Juggling your own work while trying to make homeschooling life work for your kids is a real balancing act. And let’s face it, one that we’ll probably never get perfect. Because as much as we’d like them to be able to concentrate on a list of tasks all day with no disturbances, that’s never going to happen!
We reached out across LinkedIn and asked our community to share some of their best advice and favourite resources they’ve discovered while tackling homeschooling, from XYZ to PE live with Joe Wicks!
Homeschooling top tips
- Take shifts. We’re sure many parents are already taking advantage of this one, but plan out shifts for who’s responsible for keeping an eye on them during the day. That way, you can schedule your most important parts of work during your free time and any lighter things that need doing during your parenting time.
- Allow guest stars. Accept that it’s not business as usual, and let them show their face on your video calls if they want to! We’re sure pretty much everyone has accepted this as the new normal now as we’re all in the same boat, and we bet your colleagues will love to meet them.
- Prep lunch. Spend a little time either on a morning or evening preparing packed lunches. Removing the need to do this during the day will give you more flexibility, and even that little bit of extra time can be super valuable when you’re simultaneously working and parenting!
- Get creative. Try not to take a classroom inspired approach. They’re at home, a rigid schedule and worksheets aren’t going to get the best response. While it’s still important to try and get your young ones involved in the likes of maths and science, don’t make this your main focus. Take plenty of time for creative exercises and physical activities.
- Use your environment. Get them more involved in home economics. There have been lots of parents saying that their kids have loved getting involved in things like baking, and even others saying they’ve been getting them to help with cleaning. Their level of involvement will be highly dependent on their age, but there’ll always be tasks they can do!
We were overwhelmed with the amount of different resources shared with us that many of you have been using—there are some real super-parents in our community. You’d be here all day if we listed out all the fantastic tools available, so here is a roundup of our favourites:
School subjects with the stars:
🏃♀️ PE live with Joe Wicks, every morning at 9am.
➗ Maths with Carol Vorderman, over 1,000 math lessons for different key stages.
📝 English with David Walliams, activity sheets based on his wacky world of literature.
🥪 Cooking with Jamie Oliver, online recipes for you and your kids to follow at any time.
🎸 Music with Myleene Klass, various days and times throughout the week.
🕺 Dance live with Darcey Bussel, everyday at 1.30pm.
🏰 History with Dan Snow, free for 30 days!
🏠 Home Economics live with Theo Michaels, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 4pm.
🧪 Science with Brian Cox, various days and times throughout the week.
🌍 Geography with Steve Backshall, Wednesdays at 9.30am.
Other learning resources:
For work sheets in subjects ranging from Math to French, check out Education.com for resources suited for all ages. Other websites like Twinkl, Pearson, and E-Learning for Kids also have great resources for kids of all ages, too!
Or, if you’re looking for that less school-like approach we mentioned earlier, diy.org is the perfect place to let the little ones get creative with crafts science and at home.
Or are the kids fancying a day out? From virtual tours of Chester Zoo and live aquarium cams, to virtual Disney rides and countless museum tours, throwing a few virtual school trips into the mix can be a great way to keep kids engaged.
And, if all else fails, it’s never a bad idea to pull out the board games and lego!
The secrets to making homeschooling work
Now you’ve read the top tips and resources, we wanted to share some words of wisdom we discovered from our community on the real secrets to making it work.
“Keep it light, laugh, and have fun.”
Putting things into perspective in situations like these is the key to be able to enjoy the little moments. You child’s entire education isn’t in your hands because this isn’t going to last forever. So make it fun and don’t try to force a heavy school like environment. Let your kids get creative and learn in new ways, ways that they might not always be able to at school.
“Flexibility is more important than ever.”
Knowing that it’s never going to be perfect. We can make schedules, we can prepare activities, we can even spend a fortune on fancy strategies. But think about how exciting it must feel to be let out of school early and getting an extended break—and the lack of concentration on learning that will come with it. Be lenient, know that it’s more than likely things won’t go to plan, and know that that’s okay.
We’re always keen to hear about all the new creative and innovative approaches being implemented during these tough times. Give us a follow on LinkedIn to keep us up to date with your top tips, and keep an eye out for ours too!
PS. Check out our 7 Simple Wellbeing Tips too, for tried and tested tips on how to make your wellbeing a priority while working from home.
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