Last week, like the rest of the UK, we started our home schooling journey. This was never a path I expected us to be walking but now we can add the role of teacher to our long list.
When I wrote about the upcoming school closures we had every intention of sending Ethan into school for a long as possible. This was to keep his routine in place and also to keep him busy so that we are all able to get some sleep at night.
Ethan went into school on Monday and Tuesday. His teachers were getting worried that the school day was changing too much for him. Ethan is stimming, ticking and flapping all over the place. To be honest this has been happening for a few weeks. We have been keeping an eye on coronavirus spread for quite a while. Knowing that the virus could cancel our trip to Disneyland Paris to celebrate my 40th Birthday. With the news from his teachers and even more government advice, we decided that Tuesday would be Ethan’s last day at school.
What Does Our Home Schooling Look Like?
I have seen lots of people on social media printing out rainbow timetables of all the lessons they are going to do each day. That is something we decided not to do. In my job, I can have quite tough deadlines, when these hit plans have to go out of the window. I have downloaded lots of resources and activities we can print out. Little E is also being sent weekly work from school.
Thankfully Darren has had this past week off with us and he has had the role of teacher. Our timetable has consisted of Joe Wicks in the morning on some of the days. When the kids don’t want to do this they dance along to Toy Story Toons: Partysaurus Rex (Thank you Disney+!). Little E calls this the ‘Wake and Shake’ time. This must have been something they did at school.
Darren has then been making sure that they do some form of the worksheets with him in the day. Little E loves these and will complete lots in a short space of time. With Ethan, it is hard to hold his attention and he might only complete two or three. This is a huge achievement for Ethan so we don’t push him.
Darren also has reading time with them both. Little E was sent home with quite a few of her reading level books. She reads one of them a day. Ethan has also been reading with Darren. We never get him to read at home normally. I am very proud of the work they have both been doing.
Trying to Reduce the iPad Time
My main goal is to try to reduce their iPad time. If we can get them engaging with some sort of activity with us each day I am happy. I’m also making sure we do something creative together.
This week we have been lucky as we have had some lovely items sent to review. Little E has been enjoying learning about coding with Coding Critters from Learning Resources UK. We got to play a family game together Rat-a-Tat Roll, and Little E helped me with the Ravensburger puzzle Dog’s Delight.
Ethan doesn’t tend to join in with these things. This playing is what he does at school. I am thinking of getting some lego sets that they can help me build. I also want to invest in a few more puzzles as it is helping me relax too.
Our home schooling might be more relaxed than others. Work is woven around Disney films. On working days when I’m on my own, they will be iPad days. Darren will make up the lost learning time ariund his shift. It works for us and I’m hoping during this time the children will continue to learn in some form.