Homeschool is back in full swing, and it’s a new experience for parents and children alike! We know that parents are continuing to find fun ways to help their children thrive and stay fully engaged.
At Lingokids, we want to help you master homeschooling basics and help encourage your child’s continuous progression. Ellen Wartella and Suzanne Barchers, members of our prestigious board of educators, gave us some insights on how to address and manage important topics in times like these.
We have gathered their tips for homeschooling and would love to share them with you!
1. Set a Schedule and Work Together
It’s important for kids to feel included when creating a schedule. Work together to make one that includes a mixture of tasks, activities, and breaks. Once the schedule is complete, sign a mock contract so that you can stay accountable for the decisions made.
Adding in breaks will also give you an opportunity to rest and do something fun with your child: a five-minute stretching activity, jogging in place, dancing to your favorite song, sitting down for a snack, etc.
During these breaks, talk to them about any problems they might be having with the schoolwork assigned. Remind them that you are there to help, especially if something is difficult or confusing. Also, reassure your child that these are unusual times, and staying home means helping to make sure everyone stays safe and healthy.
2. Socialization Can Be Digital
During times like these, you may be concerned that your child is going to have a lack of socialization, which is a valid concern. However, current restrictions at school minimize interaction anyway, so your child won’t be missing much.
The technological advances of today allow teachers and students to interact via video calls and online platforms. Through these channels, students can still learn foundational communication and behavioral skills, and will also see that they aren’t the only ones at home.
Children can also use Lingokids’ playlearning™ method to play with their friends online. Remind them that although they are interacting online, they still need to mind their manners, practice listening, and be kind.
3. Use the Flexibility to your Advantage
Children are flexible and more adaptable to change than we think. This shift to homeschooling may cause gaps in their academic learning process, but it will allow for other types of learning. Children can learn about time management, self-reliance, family values, and how to process difficulties. Additionally, the flexibility in their academic schedule opens the door for parents to introduce family activities that can be done safely at home.
Families can cook, play board games, use Lingokids’ educational games, or be physically active together in order to fill the potential gap in academic learning. In short, keep children busy learning new things, rather than simply busy.
4. Add EdTech Apps to the Mix
Every child learns at a different pace and in a different way. What may come quickly to one child, could be more difficult for another. Introducing educational apps allows children to learn at their pace until they achieve mastery.
Lingokids encourages repetition of an activity until that particular activity is mastered. This allows the time spent on the app to be scattered throughout the day as a fun activity between school tasks. Kids will perceive this type of learning as a game, and they will internalize fixed skills without even realizing it. Children can also choose their particular activity, which gives them the opportunity to make choices, think for themselves, and create a personalized learning path.
EdTech apps keep children engaged and enable parents to leave them on their own so that later there is time for families to do an activity together.
5. Allow Positive Screen Time
Most parents try to limit their children’s screen time. In times such as these, kids will need to spend more time in front of a screen—and that’s okay!
Most of what experts dislike about screen time is the content kids are watching, such as violence, and not so much about eye health. If children are using educational apps or tuning into video calls, they are participating in positive screen time.
Try to break up the amount of time your little one spends in front of the screen—something to take into consideration when making the schedule. Encourage your child to engage with their screens as a way to learn, but also encourage them to play and participate in other activities.
At Lingokids, we know that times are changing and we want to help ease you and your children into these changes. We encourage playing as a way to learn. Seeing new Lingofamilies from around the world join the adventure motivates us to continue working hard for you every day.