Friday, is that you? These were my exact thoughts as I relaxed for the first time today and started this post. The weekend has never looked so good – isolation or not and despite the stay-home policy – which means we really can’t do much at the weekend, I’m still excited because I get to take a break from homeschooling.
Teaching my children is nothing new to me as both of them attend schools that send regular homework, then there’s the occasional school project. So what makes this different? Most people are aware of the Covid – 19 pandemics which has brought the world as we know it it’s knees. Nations are struggling to contain it and all of humanity are in sync as we all hope and pray for a solution to this dangerous Virus. Most countries have closed all businesses, except for grocery/food stores, schools and businesses are on lockdown. This has made it necessary for parents to take over the schooling of their children. A process popularly known as Homeschooling
Homeschooling or Home Education is the educating of children at home or a variety of places other than a school. Interestingly, there are parents who home school their children (bravo to them 🤩), it could be on a full time or part-time basis. However, most children attend school.
I’ve seen quite a few similar videos to the one I shared above, and though hilarious, they all point to the fact that parents are groaning under this new burden added to our never-ending tasks. So what makes it so demanding? I agree that teachers do a lot, I have never doubted that. Which is why I always take time to appreciate my children’s teachers as often as I can.
I think this task is so tedious because parents are now performing the task of the entire staffers of a school. Most schools have teachers that take core subjects and specialist teachers. A school would normally have support staff like teaching assistants, school chef, lunch ladies, morning/after school club attendants, kitchen staff, admin staff as well as maintenance. What we now have in place is parents doing the job of all of the above whilst having to do their own day job.
In my case, I’m the mum that gets them out of bed, p.e teacher that makes sure we do a 30 minutes work out (thanks to on-line sports videos), back to mum that prepares breakfast, gets them to eat and then shower so we can resume school sharp and bright. I’m the literacy, numeracy, science, geography, R.E, piano and art teacher as well as facility manager, cook, lunch Lady, after school care assistant (which involves taking long walks) and then come back home to dinner.
Let’s not forget that schools usually have break times, so the students are not in their teachers faces 24hours like they are in their parent’s faces now.
It’s a lot for one person or even two because we’re doing the work of ten or more people and in some cases having to work at the same time. So this I think explains why parents are groaning.
I believe that Children generally behave better with their teachers, humans in general show respect to instituted authority and in the case of children, their teachers and school staff are their direct instituted authority. A teacher will therefore and in most cases get more cooperation from 15 children than a parent from one child.
Kudos to every parent out there, you’re doing well and we’ll all get through this stronger and better with stronger bonds with our children.
It is important that you get alone times which I like to call ‘me’ times. Find some time alone, you could take a walk, a nap or even watch or read something. This could be more difficult for single parents of young children that can’t be left alone and patents of children with additional needs, but hang in there, we’re all in this together and we’ll get through it.
I find sticking to a routine very effective. I work with a time-table given by my son’s school which I have shared on my social media accounts. Whilst they serve as a wonderful guide, don’t feel pressured to follow time tables and routine verbatim, you can always switch things around and improvise as necessary. Try not to burn yourself out and please ask for help when necessary, ask family, friends or neighbours if you need some relief and I’m sure most bosses will understand if you need a day off.
It is important to keep the children active and occupied at this time, it may take a lot of your time but it’s better for both parties as their minds have to be stimulated. Remember the popular saying ‘an idle mind is the devil’s workshop’ – if you don’t keep them occupied, they’ll find something to occupy themselves and sometimes the end result is not good.
Use this time to bond with them, to know their weaknesses and strength and to appreciate them. Please remember to have fun with them. Cook, play in the garden, family dinners, etc. Just have fun guys, have fun.
Do take care of your beautiful selves and let’s come out of this better people.