HOW to Homeschool.... with EASE
Updated: Apr 13
So many people are asking us about Home schooling at the moment.
Home Schooling. Home Educating. Crisis Educating.
Whatever we are calling it.
This is my first interview, having been invited by our friends at Ease, to give you some of my thoughts on home schooling during this tricky time as someone who has done it now for a few years.
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1. Home Schooling is usually a choice. Lock down is not a choice.
Home schooling is a decision taken after much discussion and not taken lightly.
It has to work for you to be able to do it. It is not easy but it is hugely rewarding and most parents and kids who do it love it. When leaving the school system to home school most of the books and recommendation is to take some time to unschool before establishing a new normal. Shaking off the institutionalisation of school and its routine before introducing a different pattern.
It is difficult in this situation but, I would strongly advise you not to try and replicate the school day at home.
This is a very different way of doing things.
2. Don’t compare your situation to that of anyone else
All schools are dealing with this differently.
Some more hands off.
Every family situation is different. Many are trying to work from home. Some have single children who may feel more isolated, others have larger families and it feels like you can’t give everyone the attention they need. In some families the parent who is normally more ‘on it’ in terms of the kids is actually the one going to work on the front line so the one looking after the kids maybe less used to the organisational aspects of home.
That offers even more challenges.
3. Home schooling is not a competition
We are all surviving and doing our best.
Try not to be out psyched by what others on your FB feed or WhatsApp feed seem to be achieving with their kids when you can barely persuade them to get dressed each day.
4. This is not really Home Schooling
Most Home schooling families do not stay in the house all day.
One of the many benefits of home schooling is the freedom to explore and learn through experiences.
Travel, road trips, trips to parks and beaches outside of the busy weekend and holiday time, exploring museums, botanical gardens and galleries.
These are the things that we base most of our learning around. We are all having to be more creative with our learning.
There are so many simple ways and tricks to doing this. Find your groove. Find your own rhythm. Everyone's home situation is different so no two days will look the same.
You will have brillant days and you will have days that feel like running through treacle.
That's totally normal.
5. Try and enjoy it
We are living a science and history lesson with our kids and they are led by our reactions and our behaviour. We can all learn so much together. That is the key to enjoying it for adults, learning with your kids.
Every child in the country is in the same situation but their experiences at home are all going to be different during this time.
Their education will not suffer as a result, but their mental health could.
Let’s concentrate on making them feel safe and loved and try and take the opportunity to teach them the skills of creativity and resilience that we are all having to display to get ourselves through this world wide pandemic.
Jo Watkins is Co founder of The HOW People, inspiring the next generation of awesome females. She is also a GP and Mum of 4 and normally home educates two of her children. The HOW People have created a pop up, private FB group HOW Connect to offer content, resources and support to families home schooling while we are all in lockdown. Anyone with kids is welcome to request to join.
Jo will be posting tips, tricks and resources during lock down and beyond. The HOW People are launching their HOW2HELP fund next week including WORKSHOPS and WEBINARS from inspirational role models, to raise money for 'Rescue packs' for ITU nurses containing hand cream, shampoo from Cardiff based social enterprise, The Goodwash Company. The packs will also contain protective plasters for their faces and some things to make their life a little bit more comfortable. Please sign up for our NEWSLETTER via the website to keep in touch and be the first to hear.
Ease offer wonderful Ease Retreats along the South Wales coast as well as business support within their community in Cardiff.