We are amidst unprecedented times. As parents and caregivers, we are learning more each day about how strong we are as new challenges and situations present themselves. Although there is no replacement for quality educators, those at home have always been one of a child’s most important teachers. We believe in you and trust that your child will continue learning with and from you as we take each step together, one day at a time.
Considerations for Families
Identify the Learning Place
Identify the area that will serve as the learning space while at home. Make sure pencils and other important tools are at hand so time isn’t spent trying to find them.
Set Up A Daily Schedule
Children do well with structure—having a daily schedule in place will help keep your child balanced. Include items such
as breakfast and lunch, as well as actual academic time(s). A visual schedule using pictures or photos may also be helpful to many learners.
Draft A Learning Plan
Teaching and learning at home is a big change for everyone. Creating a learning plan with expectations for how “school” will look, sound, and feel at home, builds a shared understanding between children and parents. Consider how a Family Media Plan might support healthy learning habits, as well.
Regular movement improves overall health and reduces stress, making work much easier to accomplish. Consider how including small chunks of exercise throughout the day might benefit the entire household! Earn bonus points for outdoor activities.
Learning at home provides the
opportunity for children to have input into what they might study. Topics such as dinosaurs and space exploration, or even learning a new skill are now a possibility. Think about how posting a simple “Wonder Wall” chart near the learning space visibly prioritizes questioning and honors a child’s inclination to constantly inquire.
If your child is stressed, he or she might find it difficult to study, or even find the motivation to get started in the first place. Help your child relieve stress by encouraging conversation about thoughts and feelings, and promote chances to reflect. Consider how a family
journal might be a good support right now.
Considerations For Setting Up A Schedule
Schedules are planned out and often written down in order to organize time and activities. Creating a visible schedule and posting it in the home can help reduce anxiety brought on by change and ensures that everyone knows what comes next in the day. For younger learners, a visible schedule also helps to create independence.
A visual schedule, or picture card schedule, can portray entire day’s activities, or a portion, such as the learning time. Picture schedules can be photos or pictures and are placed in sequential order.
Written schedules can be handwritten, typed, or posted on a whiteboard. As a task is completed, a child would cross off each item with a pencil or check off a box.
Routines help to create a good learning environment by creating stability.
Routines can be activities that are done without planning, things that you are used to doing on a regular basis such:
● brushing teeth
● household chores
● social skills
● healthy eating habits
Children do well with structure—having a daily schedule n place will help keep your child balanced. Include items such as breakfast and lunch, as well as actual academic learning time(s). Learn more about suggested age-appropriate academic time in the Recommended Daily Activity Times.
How might storytelling and writing amongst families during this time promote social connections and social emotional stability? Examples of family journals include:
● Daily Entry
● Shared 1-sentence journals (passed around to each family member)
● Nature or Outdoor Journals
● Visual Journals
● Gratitude Journals
A “wonder wall” is simply a space designated in the home where children (and parents) can post anything they wonder about during the day. The wonder wall could be in the form of a notebook, chart paper, or even piece of paper taped to the wall. Oftentimes, a child will ask a very good question, but the time or space doesn’t allow for an immediate conversation or chance to research. Including an outlet for these wonders, especially near the learning space, visibly prioritizes questioning and honors a child’s inclination to constantly inquire!