For many of us at home with our children during this time, it will feel as though it is the first time we have had to help them learn.
Many children of primary and secondary age will have been sent home with worksheets, packs of suggested reading, online connections to their school education platform. Teachers will be sending regular quizzes and topics to research, comprehensions and next steps.
And this is great for those children who will miss the routine and structure of a school day, who love to learn this way and who thrive on deadlines.
Let them take control of their timetable – it’s a great life skill, time management – and let them guide you in how they will tackle work sent home.
Let them know you are there to help (don’t panic if you don’t know how to – there are online ‘how to’s all over the place! I’ve used them in prep for classes and still use them when my now secondary age daughter asks me questions that I simply do not know!)
But what about those ‘reluctant learners’ – oh how that phrase annoys me!
Children do love to learn, they are so good at it. They may not exhibit their learning abilities in a classroom environment where, for some, expectations of behaviour and co-operation are unachievable. I have no end of respect for teachers and know firsthand how disheartening it is to not be able to reach every single one of your class all of the time. It’s nigh on impossible sometimes but those moments where your ‘reluctant learners’ (shudder) get it and start to fly are phenomenal!
So – how do you as a parent help your child to learn?
To be fair, you do it all the time. You’ve been doing it since they were little ones – from
- responding to their cries,
- letting them know you understand them
- pointing out colours in a rainbow
- singing the rainbow song (whichever one fits your age bracket- mine was always Up Above the Streets and Houses!)
- letting them jump into puddles and learn when too deep is too deep;
- getting them to be quiet when you are on the phone
- learning when to stop for a moment and respect someone else’s wishes (ok – it took my daughter a while to learn this one!)
For all of you at home with your children now – don’t try to be their teacher. Don’t think you have to deliver the curriculum. Please don’t. Be a co-learner. Get ready to have some fun and help them learn in all the right ways.
There are many websites, organisations, authors, adventurers and more out there at the moment providing excellent activities and experiences for children of all ages. It is our aim, over the next few weeks, to provide you with ideas, links and some ‘here’s one I made earlier’ moments. If I can link them to curriculum areas I will but this won’t be the focus.
We want your children to learn in the best way possible for them and for you.
by Allie White, educational consultant to BrightMinds
As a parent and ex-teacher, Allie has a hands-on approach to home learning, believing that the best learning is done together in a relaxed environment. Coming from a make-do and mend background, she likes to create activities for her children that use things already in the home.
Our mission at BrightMinds is to foster “a brighter way to play” to inspire your child to be curious about the world around them & encourage creativity in a fun & relaxed way.
We curate a world-class range of educational toys, games, gifts & books which are good quality, safe and backed by our extraordinary customer service. Home Learning Toys are our speciality and a Home Learning Toy from BrightMinds is a wonderful gift for your special boy or girl. Backed by our 90 day guarantee we are the number one site for thoughtful toys for kids!