Is it just me or have you never been so happy to be child free?
On Monday five weeks of home-schooling begins in Queensland. Oh, you poor suckers.
I am not book smart, never was. The year they teach long division is the year my kids officially became smarter than me and I am one hundred per cent a quitter. If I don’t like it, you probably can’t make me do it. Not the credentials of a home school hero.
My home school would include movies, yelling, food bribes and occasional day drinking. Probably by the kids.
However, my sister Brigid is a senior teacher at a large high school and says it is not going to be as hard as people imagine.
For a start she says you are not home schooling at all, you are supervising your child’s education.
Their real teachers have years of experience and have put in weeks of hard work to
provide engaging curriculum. Teachers are still providing support either by Zoom or Webex, email and in my sister’s case, where one third of students don’t have access to internet, daily phone support. Teachers will do the marking and provide any guidance and feedback along the way for students who choose to engage.
I laughed when she wrote that because obviously there will be kids who don’t choose to engage but Brigid insists even these kids will be OK. Their teachers will meet them where they are and extend their knowledge from there.
Smart, engaged kids will always be that, the little Caroline’s of the world won’t change either. Teachers already know who is going to do the work.
My sister says don’t be hard on your kids or yourself. Routine is great, emphasise the fact schools are expecting some learning to take place and ask your children what they need to make that happen. Do they want to get school out of the way early in the day, or break things up with movement, work outside or come up with a self directed project like cooking or photography?
The less screen time the better, don’t let the kids con you that they need to stay in touch with the net during the day. They don’t. It will only make the school day longer and more frustrating.
My sister reckons the best thing anyone can do is write a journal. Individual experiences during the crisis will be the most interesting learning and reading to come out of this time.
Finally, Brigid says don’t be scared and know that teachers can’t wait to have their kids back in the classroom. Just do the best you can and enjoy your little learners. This crisis will be over soon enough and the quality of time with your kids is worth more than the long division they might be missing out on.