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COVID-19 Home Schooling Resources for “Traditional School” Parents

 

 

CoviD-19 Home Schooling resources

 

“Been homeschooling a 6-year old and 8-year old for one hour and 11 minutes. Teachers deserve to make a billion dollars a year. Or a week.” – Shandra Rhimes

 

School is in session in homes across America. Parents are overwhelmed and underprepared for their new roles.  They are managing their work at home and “teaching” their kiddos.  Here are ideas and resources to help you navigate this new challenge.

 

Establishing routines

In the first few weeks, teachers are setting up virtual classrooms and getting prepared. Right now parents need to establish routines that promote learning.  It’s most important to set up daily routines like bedtimes and getting ready for the day.  Keep to your usual times for both your kiddos and you.  You will be better prepared to manage the ups and downs that come with new challenges.  Your kiddos will be more resilient to this change.

Here are some resources to reinforce your ideas about routines.

Leslie Josel and Order out of Chaos

Ann Dolan and Keeping Your Kids in Study Mode

Corona Schooling

Preparing for Online Learning

 

Learning online

Learning at home is a whole new element to you and your child.  Online learning can be positive because of fewer distractions and easier focus. Kiddos are drawn to computers.

  • Set up an environment for your child to keep focused. Creating multiples spots to sit comfortably with a laptop (not in bed) will make learning happen.
  • Comfortable headphones help with focus. These can be earbuds, airpods, or headphones.
  • Online learning could be consolidated with a single calendar such as Schoology.  Be sure your kiddo is looking at it daily like traditional school to keep up with assignments.

 

Acknowledge your child’s strengths

Parents know their kids strengths and challenges. Teachers often send different choices to do similar concepts. Distinguish what is required and what has options. Offer alternatives to assignments that are real life experiences. Baking with measurement or playing the Game of Life and being the banker are ways to experience math.

 

Along these lines, children with special needs and special education plans may need more diverse learning.  In this interim time with schooling, check in with Additudemag.com, Understood.org and your child’s teacher to learn more ways to teach a skill.

 

Always include downtime

Your new schedule will include recess twice a day. Take advantage of outside time for your kiddo to run and play. As the teacher, take this time for yourself too.

Individual work time can be time to read a book, time to work with crafts or time to work independently on a school related online resource. Independent work sets your child up to know more about their own strengths too.

 

Adjusting your expectations

Take the pressure off yourself as a parent during the COVID-19 outbreak.  You have been your child’s first teacher and continue to be successful doing the work of nurturing, supporting and educating.  You are doing amazing work so keep it up!

 

 

COVID-19 Making Your Time at Home Productive and Peaceful

home productive and peaceful

 

With the self imposed or CDC required time at home, you are thinking you will be at home for a prolonged period of time.  We live day to day because there is so much information coming at us and there is not much that is certain right now.  Let’s take this time to take care of ourselves, those around us and our community.  Using our time at home wisely helps us feel positive and productive.

  • Think self care and putting your own oxygen mask on first.  That includes keeping your routines going well. That is going to bed early for rest, eating healthy, and exercising. Remember, if you are sick to stay home and take care of yourself.  Keep these routines going even after this crisis passes. It’s a jump start to what we all want for a healthy life. I am biking and walking daily to keep fit and keep calm.
  • Take time to relax and time to reset. There is a lot on our minds! We have long to do lists, anxiety about health and family and work, and many decisions to make each day.  Having time for prayer and meditation helps.  Spiritual reading or time for meditation daily helps you sort through what is on your mind and get a bigger picture. On your phone, you can check out Headspace or the Mindfulness app. Both are free for use on your devices. Research shows how stress affects our immunity to illness.
  • Organizing helps us love what we have and create serenity in our homes.  Start small with a spot in your home to declutter.  It might be your desk or a drawer in your home office where you are working from home.  I have been peeking into drawers and letting go of what is not necessary. If you are feeling ambitious, start sorting your digital photos.  It’s a project that will bring you joy.
  • Connecting makes a difference right now. Reach out by text, phone or email to say hello, thinking of you and check on your connections. Keep especially connected to our older friends and community members by reaching out and checking on them.  Drop off what they need and be of service.
  • Give your brain a boost. This is a great time to learn. There are learning opportunities everywhere from Coursera to podcasts.  Keeping cognitively active keeps us engaged and moving forward to our goals for this year.
  • Working from home and your kiddos are schooling at home? Set up times for work and breaks. Creating and posting a schedule helps everyone know the plan for the day.  Make it fun with a schedule that includes breaks for recess for everyone.
  • Allocate and adhere to screen time and social media time for yourself and your kiddos. Mindless surfing leads to negative emotions at times.  Keep a common charging spot where everyone charges during certain times.
  • Distract everyone with 60s style family fun. Host a family art day, family dance party and family game night.  Having a new way to engage with your family makes for tons of fun!  Our newest family games include charades and Sync Up
  • Remember Keep Calm and Carry On. We are a resilient, resourceful and smart community. Sharing that positivity and kindness are the hallmarks of these crisis.  We are all in this together.

Embracing Self Care recommended for COVID-19

self care covid-19

 

The news about COVID-19 (Coronavirus) has us thinking about health and wellness. The news can be scary about immune compromised people and how the virus spreads.  There are many ways to protect ourselves from the virus. Most compelling is that self care makes a difference for us when it comes to this virus and well being. That self care includes daily routines that promote health all the time.

 

Protective measures include putting routines  in place are both for your health and to be your best self. We all know to wash our hands thoroughly,  avert coughing, and stand at a distance. Know to stay home when you are not well and spend time resting.  These protective measures can be a part of our daily routines even after the virus passes. Happily we can go back to hugging!

 

Physical self-care

There is an abundance of information on how to keep ourselves in great shape.  These are the basics we are well familiar with and should be doing each and every day, regardless of the virus.

  • Start by getting a great night’s sleep. Get ready early so you are in bed to get 8 hours of sleep.  Set an environment that helps you get the rest you need and want with no electronics an hour before bed and a notepad by your bed for last minute thoughts. Research shows a cool environment with heavy covers helps you rest through the night.
  • Eat a variety of veggies and go heavy on your protein for a well-balanced diet.  We are what we eat! If you are stocking up, keep organized by decluttering your pantry and categorizing.  A well stocked pantry makes it easier to eat healthy too.  A healthy diet keeps your immune system up and running well.
  • Exercise daily.  My personal favorites are walking and pilates.  Walk the extra stairs to work or park farther away to get some time in if you are short on possibilities.

While this is a scary time, it might also be the jump start you need to get these physical care activities into place in your life.  A body that is well all the time fights off all illnesses.

Mindset self care

Research shows how stress affects our immunity to illness. We thrive on laughter and positivity. Keeping a sense of humor and laughter lightens your load. Spending time with family and friends brings you a sense of belonging. Setting aside time for hobbies, such as reading a book or listening to music, are joyful ways to spend your time.  As a lifelong learner, I value the power of small bites of information.  I listen to podcasts to think big about what I want and learn new ideas. Actively manage your stress with practicing relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, meditation, yoga, tai chi or massage. Through apps, you can meditate daily to help you lower anxiety about life.

There is a lot on our minds! We have long to do lists, anxiety about health and family and work, and many decisions to make each day.  Having time for prayer and meditation helps.  Spiritual reading or time for meditation daily helps you sort through what is on your mind and get a bigger picture. On your phone, you can check out Headspace or the Mindfulness app. Both are free for use on your devices.

 

Routines for self care

By taking better care of yourself through routines, you are taking control of what you can control. It is not easy to practice self care in our busy lives with stressful jobs and activities. We can let technology get in the way of real self care. Start with one simple routine to empower your most important self care and gradually add to your routines. Remember that adage, put your own oxygen mask on first. It is especially the case with self-care. Embrace the self care we all need all the time.