Bring it on Homeschool!
I know we are all exhausted and sad now that we know all in person school for Louisiana students will not resume for this school year. I’m sure you are rolling your eyes and cracking open a bottle of wine at the thought of it. I know I am, but I am also so thankful for homeschooling right now and this is why.
My kids NEED consistency
Our pre-quarantine lifestyle was jam packed with practices, meetings, play dates, festivals and errands. My kids had a pretty clear idea of what was happening each day of the week. With this drastic change in our lives I knew I was going to have to create a space that made them feel safe, familiar and excited to learn. On the eve of the “First day of Homeschool” I transformed a corner our living room into a classroom and my craft/laundry room into a home office. I wanted the girls to get settled in quickly because I had a 9 am Zoom call on Day 1. Thankfully the makeover wow’d them enough and they were immediately on board with learning at home.
It keeps us accountable
With a clear schedule of what we need to do each day, even if it’s not in the exact order, we make sure that we meet our goals daily. The girls will tell me, “Mooommmm, it’s recess time, we’re ready to go outside!” Without visual guidance we would easily spend the entire day snuggled up on the couch or me yelling at the girls to shut the door while I try to finish my calls for work. I also adjusted our schedule so that the girls are occupied during my busiest work time so I can attempt to be productive during my calls and not have them jumping in and waving at my coworkers on Zoom. We are also realistic and some days we don’t get to all of their assignments and I am okay with that!
We feel like we have control
In a world full of uncertainty and organized panic it is nice to control what we can. This quarantine life has my emotions and anxiety at an all time high; being able to dictate what will and will not happen in our daily lives keeps me calm. It also keeps me off my phone for hours at a time trying to see the latest updates from the Mayor, Governor and President; which seems to happen every 30 minutes.
It cuts down on arguments
Having a schedule helps us peacefully transition from one activity to the next. My girls were both accustomed to pretty structured school environments with a predictable schedule, so implementing a set of guidelines leaves little room for argument about what we are doing next. I enjoy not having to re-direct or explain for the 10th time why they can’t watch TV or the iPad all day long. Pre-planned art activities from their schools have been life savers; that mixed with a few days of free play crafts has made them feel like they have some say as well. We are still working on a perfect balance of a little chaos and a little structure but I think we are getting there.
It keeps weekends exciting!
It is so easy to become stir crazy during this time so we try to keep “extra fun” activities for the weekend. My husband is also an essential employee so weekends are still dedicated family time for us. We try to save the extra long adventure walks, spa days and baking for weekends when I have an extra set of hands to handle all of the excitement. It also gives us something to look forward to!