Schools have closed around the country due to the coronavirus outbreak, and it doesn’t look like they’ll fully reopen for some time. If you’re one of the millions of parents looking to educate your children around the home, never fear: homeschooling can be an opportunity instead of a challenge! Here are the best ways to keep your kids busy, healthy and happy during this time.
1. Set up a learning space
You don’t need to be too rigid about where this is; after all, the advantage of home learning is flexibility, giving each child the chance to learn in their own way. As a general rule, a table in a quiet, well-lit part of the house will do the trick. The key is to make sure you cut out distractions as much as possible: that means keeping toys out of sight, keeping sound to a minimum, and if they’re learning on devices like iPads and computers, switching off notifications.
2. Establish a daily routine
You know the drill: wake up, have breakfast, change out of pyjamas, brush teeth. These are the essentials before any day at preschool or school, and there’s no reason this should change now! Start your homeschool routine with regular start and finish hours, and have breaks as usual for recess and lunch. But again, flexibility is key: ask what is working for your child, and adjust their routine accordingly.
3. Familiarise yourself with your kids' work
It can be hard to find out what your kids are meant to be learning; the Australian curriculum can be complex and confusing. That’s where Schooling Online can come in handy. We have plenty of options to help get children ready for school or to meet their curriculum requirements. For example, our History for Kids series ranges from pre-kindy lessons about ‘Fantastic Families’ and ‘Sharing the Past’ to teaching Year 5 and 6 students about Australian Federation, democracy and migration.
4. Teach them life skills
Now is a better time than ever to help your children achieve a holistic education, cultivating life skills like resilience, creative and critical thinking, and empathy. We’ve created the Bella Bloom: A Life Skills series to help kids navigate the world around them. Young children start their journey following loveable preschooler Bella and her pet bird Pepe, as she learns to make her bed and tie her shoelaces, while kids in older years learn to solve trickier problems like playground and classroom etiquette. Isolation because of coronavirus is the perfect time to build on these skills.
5. Give your kids space to learn
Lots of parents and educators are using technology to keep children engaged and educated during the coronavirus outbreak. But remember, you’re not a substitute teacher, more like a teacher’s aide or facilitator. This is where Schooling Online can come in handy: our interactive videos allow children to learn what they want, at their own pace. Aside from the regular supervision you’d give them at home, you can set and forget!
6. Have fun!
Remember what we said about seeing homeschooling as an opportunity instead of a challenge? And whoever said education needed to be a dull chore? Gone are the days of worksheets and rote learning. With playful and interactive programs like Schooling Online, kids can take a virtual trip to the zoo, go on a ‘food safari’ and learn their ABCs, all from the safety and comfort of home. Each day is a new adventure!