Lockdown Life: a slice of home learning

It’s not an easy thing, this home learning lark.

Prior to lockdown, the only other formal learning that had to take place at home was homework, which for my primary school-age children consisted of doing times tables and spellings every week, with some reading thrown into the mix.

So it was a bit of a shock to suddenly be responsible for educating two children in subjects that I myself was not all that familiar or comfortable with (i.e. maths).

I should point out that I work as a teaching assistant in a college, so I am not unaccustomed to helping students, but that is completely different from working with your own, younger children.

So, how have we been rolling here, then?

Well, I’ve tried to mix in some fun, hands-on stuff for my kids to do among all the worksheets and assignments.

A bit of home baking (key lime pie)

key lime pie

Planting seeds and watching them grow…

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Going on nature walks to see what we can find in the woods (sticks, mostly)…

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Making clay models of fossils to support their school topic…

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Making play-doh volcanoes and filling them with home made magma…

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And unwinding with a bit of art…

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YouTube has been an invaluable resource for finding materials to relate to school work;  short videos about volcanic eruptions and tectonic plates, fun facts about the Pacific Ocean, and a guide to Ramadan have all helped to engage my kids in their work.

One of the best resources we’ve found is this YouTube channel dedicated to teaching children how to draw familiar cartoon and gaming characters: Art For Kids Hub. I can’t recommend it enough; it has kept both my kids busy and quiet while I’ve taken a much needed break from playing teacher. Here’s an example:

So, yeah, all in all, it’s going OK. The kids have adapted well to home learning, but the highlight of the week for them is having a video chat with their teachers. The school and the teachers have been amazing throughout all this chaos, and I have been so appreciative of their support.

Teachers are everything.

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