Tips for Homeschooling with Snack addicts!

I think most parents are feeling a little worried about homeschooling in the next few weeks, myself included, with 4 kids at home and one on SENCO. In my eyes teachers are angels and I am just a parent not a teacher.

I never thought I would see the above again but last year I had to do homeschool for a few months while still working from home, as they didn't have school places for the boys when we first moved. I was really lucky to have great teaching friends who gave excellent advice and I quickly learnt a few things which really helped so thought I would put them here...they are less educational more survival. 

Do Not Stress.
We are in an unprecedented emergency situation impacting the whole world. None of us know what we are doing but are all in the same boat. So be your child's teacher how you see fit. If that's building lego and baking, so be it.

Be Kind to yourself.
Most of us have never had to actually do our day job with our kids strapped to our side and a lot of us still HAVE to work. We simply cant do it all, so whatever you can manage is more than enough. Read that again.

Business as usual.
As much as I wanted us to stay in PJ's all the time I found having a loose routine really helped. Getting up, washed, dressed, making their bed as usual was far less stressful as the day progressed and kept them more settled - Reader, I mean feral. Making a packed lunch in advance as usual was really good too as I wasn't thinking about it all morning and they could have it as soon as they were "STARVING" 

Organisation will go a LONG way. 
There will be many moments in the next few weeks when you're in the middle of something important, maybe on a work call or you literally just need 5 minutes peace. So I highly recommend making them individual baskets or bags with some activities in ready to go. Books from around the house, pencils, paper, cards and point them in that direction...especially if you hear the dreaded "I'm BORED". 

Quality not quantity. 
My good friend a teacher said what you can achieve in a school day you can achieve at home 1:1 in a few hours. I'm speaking for Primary School ages but if they only do an 1-3hrs a day that is brilliant. Anything is brilliant. 

Snack Attackers. 
How come kids go all day at school with just lunch but at home they can eat more than a baby elephant? This is an old pic from last summer but seeing similar things so thought worth sharing. Each kid gets their own basket, when it’s gone it’s GONE. Include school water bottle too or cup and if kids are older a jug of water too. Game changer. Less stress. Less Mess. More time to TRY and work or homeschool.

Alternative learning. 
If you or your kids just aren't feeling homeschool that's fine, we learn in many ways. To be honest instead of learning a lot of the stuff I don't use AT ALL these days I wish I had learnt to cook, garden, play cards and spent time with my family instead. I've already been asked quite a few times what is enough though? So I was sent this as a guide from a teacher and think it's quite good. 

My ideal for my kids in our school?

- A bit of reading every day (independent or to them or via audiobook etc)

- some free writing now and then. If they'll keep a diary or something, great. If not, would they draw a comic?

- Practical hands on maths. Be that via cooking, cleaning, outside or some maths games physical or digital.

- Some fine motor work. Lego, cutting, play doh, tidying up small toys.

- Physical exercise everyday

- Some art/music where possible through the week. Doesn't need to be guided.

-Stretch goal, if old enough getting them to independently work on a project is great for keeping brains ticking over. Get them researching in a book or online and putting together something to present to you or family.

- If younger, lots of imaginative free play, the more independent the better.

Finally if you're worried your kid is having too much screen time put on the subtitles BOOM now they are reading! 

If you manage any schooling outside of a school, not being a teacher you're doing awesome.

Stay safe and strong everyone.  

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