We’ve had one week of home school so far thanks toCoronavirus, and there are an unknown number of weeks ahead. We’ve been given a home school pack with two week of work in. So I’m expecting there will be more coming up for post Easter holidays, assuming everywhere is still on lockdown, or at least no school by then.
As expected home school hasn’t been easy, mainly because it’s not a school setting. I’m also trying to work from home. The OH is still working on the farm, so it’s all down to me to make sure school work is done, alongside my work and getting food put on the table for 5pm for everyone. Usually they both eat elsewhere Monday to Thursday, so just coming up with food everyone will and can eat (I’m trying to still stick to keto) is one of the hardest things.
Home school has taught me several things. It’ll be interesting at the end of it to see how things have changed. Whether N will feel differently about school and the work he does there.
This summer term at school would have been preparing the year 4s for going into the strictest class with the head teacher. Not having had proper schooling before then is going to make it a bigger jump than it would have been normally.
Here’s some of the things that home school has taught me.
1, N is a diligent child, but will do the least amount of work he needs to complete it.
English in particular. He’ll use every excuse he can think of to avoid doing a full two pieces of work a day. The most common excuse being ‘we usually spend an hour planning, then another session writing up’. Well love, you’ve got two activities a day, so that means 30 mins planning and 30 minutes for writing up, unless you want to do double the next day.
2, N might be quiet generally, but he sings and commentates on everything h’s doing.
I’m presuming it’s to either distract himself or to avoid English being so boring to him.
3, N love maths and really dislikes english.
He would do a day of maths worksheets if he could. But comprehension…he moans just opening the booklet about how boring the texts are. Then writing english activities e.g writing a letter or story. No thank you. N struggles thinking of a topic to write about. Although he’s ok doing the planning part, setting out the features he needs to include, thinking of his own content he struggles with.
4, Research is more interesting.
N likes facts and he is good at remembering them. School topics, plus having watched a lot of Horrible Histories in the past helps. So doing an information text or biography is something that’s less painful to get him to complete. The only issues is getting enough down on paper and speeding up the work he’s doing. His teacher’s been saying that for the best part of 2 years.
5, I was right not to go into teaching.
One careers profiling test we did at school suggested I should have been a geography or history teacher (or a postal worker!) but I’m glad I laughed it off. There’s no way I could stand in front of a class of varying ability of children and teach all day every day. I’d get really exasperated with children who didn’t care, didn’t work to the level I expected, and who were struggling. What a load of rubbish our GCSE careers service efforts were!
6, Home schooling definitely wouldn’t work for N if it included anything other than outdoor play, farming, lego building or maths. Getting him to write anything or do reading would be a impossible without the influence and encouragement of a teacher. As for structured PE or more organised sports it probably wouldn’t happen. He likes to do his own thing – he turned up his nose at the Joe Wickes PE sessions, even though they do HIT in school daily. We’d have to permanently be our with tutors, group sessions etc, but he doesn’t see most ‘school’ things that involve writing as interesting or essential
7, Routine works for us.
Well, everything gets pushed earlier in the day as that’s when N concentrates the most. But letting him choose and plan a whole day would not get anything done other than maths. So routine and set tasks works for him.
8, You need to let go and admit you can only get done what gets done.
Children need a lot of breaks and when you’re on your own and working, it’s hard to get a proper break in. Thankfully the weather has been nice so he can get outside. As long as we get maths and one of his english tasks done, plus reading, I’m ok with that.
9, Children don’t always think logically.
If I was N I would do english first (or at least 1 of his english pieces). Then he’d only have maths to whizz through afterwards. The english wouldn’t drag out so long at the end of the day. But no, he insists on doing all the maths first. It”s like dinner. I would always eat the worst things on the plate first, and finish with the favourites. But N is the opposite way round. Weird!
10, Distractions are everywhere.
From birds on the feeds to me also sitting at the table. Food and water. Himself. Crikey, I never knew children burped so much. And farted. We’ve had attempted burping ‘competitions’ with himself, plus a lot of beat boxing efforts.
Hopefully now I know these things, we can get on week two and progress as we have done this week.
How’s your home school this week gone?