For many of us, this trying time is further complicated by the many hats we suddenly find ourselves wearing. As we try our best to educate our children at home, do our jobs, run a household, and try to take care of ourselves, we find it can be pretty tricky.
Do you find yourself wondering how teachers do every day?
Let’s look at how we can bring a shift to how we are “schooling.” The first, and most important thing to do, is find a space in your home to dedicate to schooling. This gives children the opportunity to have a separation between their “home” and “school”, despite them being the same place.
Here are a few suggestions as to how to turn your home, or an area in it, into the designated school zone, of course, depending on the age of your children.
● Create a classroom-like area in the home to be used for school time only. It is important to ask your children to help you create this school-like area in a way that they feel would support their learning. Empowering our children to help make this work is a key ingredient. Not only will it ensure that children feel comfortable, but they are more likely to look forward to spending time in a space that they helped to put together.
● For elementary school children, perhaps you could suggest bringing in a few stuffed animals, or even dolls to represent the other students in the class. The important thing is that you and your children view this area as a place to do school work. Their input in creating this space will make an enormous difference in how they feel in it. Keep them involved and part of the ongoing conversation.
● For many children, especially older, you may need to set up something like a desk. Be sure to include necessities such as pencils, a computer, whiteboard, and anything else that represents the classroom. Not only will this provide a sense of normalcy, but ensuring that they have everything they need will eliminate the distraction of getting up to get these things. Next, define the rules of the classroom. Have your child help you create “school rules”. This way, you are all on the same page.
● Perhaps create a time period for school and studies. Remember, they are at home, not school, so it might be very challenging to structure the entire day as a school day. How much time do they truly need for what must get done? Work with a structure that you believe will suit your student.
● Most importantly, work together with your child to make this work. Lay out what needs to be done (depending on the age of your child) and ask the child for recommendations for structure as well as space creation. These conversations are more successful when we involve our child.