Hi everyone. I hope your families are doing well. Some of you may already know this, but I have two little boys, and for a few years, I homeschooled them. As such, I’ve had a number of families ask me about this now that all of our kids are home. As we try to navigate this new space, I’ve been asked for my advice a few times and there are some things I’d like to say to all of you who suddenly find yourself with school aged kids at home.
Schooling is different for everyone now
First of all, this is not homeschooling. Homeschool parents have spent months researching curriculum and making a plan. They have support groups, a stack of resources and a community. They had time to get prepared, and they found themselves in that situation by choice. It’s vastly different than finding yourself having to manage schooling during a crisis. The most important thing is not to put undue pressure on yourself. Your kids may not remember everything they read or learned during this time, but they will remember how they felt.
Focus on wellness first
Many families are trying to balance working from home with schooling needs. Many more aren’t fortunate enough to be working right now, and are dealing with the associated stresses of that. It’s significant. It’s layered, and the situation for every family is different. Focus on being well together first and foremost. This doesn’t have to look perfect, and you don’t have to transform into a homeschool teacher overnight. No one is expecting you to.
This is what we are doing
When people ask me what they should be doing, I tell them to read together. Bake bread together. Learn to cook simple recipes. Play math games. Plant seeds on your window sill. Make playdough. Engage your kids in some simple chores, like laundry and setting the table. And give yourself a break if you are struggling. This is unprecedented.
If you are looking to introduce some activities to your day, I’m including a link to a board on my Pinterest account you may enjoy. It has lots of ideas for kids of various ages, and I’ll continue to add to it. We’re in this together, and when we do emerge on the other side of this, we’ll have learned many lessons. They don’t all have to be math lessons.
Lynne Lund is the MLA for District 21 Summerside-Wilmot.