With millions of kids out of school across the country due to the coronavirus crisis, parents are scrambling to keep up the semblance of education at home-with sometimes hilarious results. No doubt by now you have tried your hand at “home schooling” your kids and, if you are lucky, it went well. Your kids did their work, did not complain, and you understood what you were supposed to be teaching.
If that’s you, it is safe to say you are in the minority.
Social media is awash in hilarious quarantine school fails because that’s what we’re all doing: Quarantine school. This isn’t home schooling. Home schooling is outings and classes and playdates and co-ops. Home schooling is socializing with friends and field trips to the zoo. Home schooling is not this. This, what we’re doing right now, is about as far from home schooling as you can get. We’re all doing it, and we feel like we’re doing it poorly but take heart parents, you aren’t alone. The struggle is real as we all try to navigate this new normal and keep our heads above water.
It’s ok to mess up. It’s ok for lessons to get bulldozed in favour of a movie. It’s ok to relax and give yourself some grace. It’s ok to go cry in the bathroom, too. Because this is new, it’s hard, and no one, NO ONE expects you to nail it.
Heck, it’s even ok if your kid writes an unflattering journal entry about your attempts to keep the education alive at your house.
But, here are a few things to remember: kids are resilient, learning happens everywhere, and you don’t have to be perfect. Our kids are going to be fine. Really, they will be. If they don’t master multiplication or learn how to subtract a nickel from three quarters, it’s fine. If they still don’t remember to use punctuation or put finger-spaces between their words, it’s fine. You don’t have to do huge creative lessons with them. Let them help you in the kitchen. Ask them to get a stick of butter and cut it into quarters, let them follow a recipe from start to finish, let them sit outside and count birds and try to graph them later. It’s fine.
Your kids will be fine. They will grow up into educated people despite missing a couple of months of school. Just remember that no one, literally no one, is keeping score. You make it through the day however you can-even if that means TV and tablets.
Take a break while you try to figure this stuff out and remember if it’s “not going good” you’re not alone.