Many parents have found themselves taking on the role of teacher after the government announcement on 26 March encouraging parents to keep their children home, and that for the last week of term schools will only be providing supervision, not structured learning, to those kids whose parents cannot make alternative arrangements.
This sudden addition to your career portfolio can seem daunting! Schools across WA are currently working very hard to develop an online learning zone and once this is fully established you should follow the directions from your school in regards to what your children should be doing. In the meantime, as someone with a whopping two weeks experience in this department I thought I would share some tips:
• You don’t have to prep and deliver five hours of lessons a day. We are averaging about an hour of literacy activities and an hour of maths with plenty of reading/colouring/educational tv/outdoor play to round out the day.
• Some experts are advising keeping a routine at this uncertain time, others advocate throwing away structure and just enjoying family time. You do what fits your family best! Personally, we like an adaptable routine and I really want to be clear to my kids that this time is not like school holidays — especially when we don’t know how long this is going to go on for.
• Get out of your pyjamas (kids and adults) and try and start at roughly the same time each day.
• Don’t try and teach new concepts — I am in no way qualified to teach my children in the manner in which they are used to being taught. Most schools follow a whole school teaching method and your kids are used to this.
• Keep to revising content learned in term one already – this also helps with being able to set them a task and leave them to it, as no doubt you are also working from home and trying to manage everything else too.
• Building Lego, reading books and smooshing playdough absolutely count as learning.
• Your kids will give you more sass and argue with you more than they would dare their teacher.
• Optional: refer to yourself as Mrs Mum/Mr Dad and make them sing good morning to you at the start of the day.