I have pondered this question over the past few weeks while navigating the whole “school at home” concept.
Some days I have different answers than others. Honestly, there are days when I feel like I have made a breakthrough in learning and then there are other days when I don’t know what to do so that my child understands the concept and this usually ends up in frustration.
It’s hard to gauge how long it is going to take to do the work each week and how to spread that out over the entire week.
When we first started, I thought that we should go by a schedule and try to do things very methodically. We first started doing one subject a day and trying to get everything that was required for that subject finished before we moved onto the next one on the following day.
The first month, honestly, we finished the work far too quickly and then we had extra time at the end of the week.
Now that we are more into the groove, I have scrapped all schedules and expectations and order for the work that needs to be done.
When we get all of the work each Monday morning, I usually look over all the work first to see if I know how to do it (yes, there are things I don’t understand) and then try to figure out how to teach the concepts or the approach that I will take so that my child will understand and be able to retain some of the concepts.
In our house, we don’t set the alarms to get up. When the kids wake up and get going, that’s when we get started. We have all day so for us there is no real requirement to keep in the normal time frame of school. After all, we are at home and not school and nothing I do will create that environment.
My son learns best when he does things hands on. Now for all of his classes it is sometimes hard to do this but where it is possible, we try to make this happen.
He loves doing experiments and crafty things so we use these methods to reinforce some of the concepts that he is learning. I have to admit that I need to really pay attention and think about what we are going to do and how we can solidify these concepts.
We started a few weeks ago making a video each week of one of the concepts that has been taught. This has been fun and challenging because we need to plan out the steps for the video and then decide how we will proceed. We have made a volcano, a topographic map, playdoh, a tactile map of land formations to name a few.
I thought from the beginning if the teacher could see on video how we are re-enforcing the concept, it may give them some ideas at school on how they can capitalize on the way our son learns.
The teachers loved the videos!
In fact, each week they now request one from us and that gives me time to also figure out how to make our video better each time so I am learning as well.
The videos are also a fun activity that we can do together and our son loves watching himself in these once they have been completed.
I have also implemented “Fun Fridays.” So we try to get all of the work completed within the 4 days and then Friday we designate as a Fun day where our son can choose activities that he wants to do that are not school related. We have done outside activities, random crafts, baking and lots of other fun things.
So all in all, in the midst of this pandemic I thing we are doing pretty good!
How are you doing?