The COVID-19 pandemic has forced us to undergo many changes. Adults and employment aren’t just the two things that have been affected by this crisis. Even children and their education have suffered a major blow. This pandemic has removed their option to go to school physically. Taking that routine away can cause an emotional and mental toll on children. Hence, it is important for us adults that we provide our children the best possible homeschool setup that they deserve during these hard times.
Choose a Curriculum
If you are one of the parents who decide to take on the responsibility full time, you have to decide which curriculum you want for your child. There are many types of curriculum nowadays, but the most common is the K-12 curriculum. Other programs being used are:
- Traditional Homeschooling – This is the most common type of approach, especially for accidental homeschoolers or those that don’t have any option but to study at home. This is often called “school at home” because it follows the same style that many private and public schools use. It focuses on the use of textbooks, quizzes, and exams. Teachers and professors usually step in from time to time through video calls or conferences.
- Classical Homeschooling – The classical style primarily focuses on a three-part process called the trivium. By following the trivium method, the student needs to go through three stages of learning: concrete learning, critical learning, and abstract learning.
- Unschooling – This style can be new to many parents and is sometimes considered unorthodox. In hindsight, unschooling allows the student’s curiosity, interest, and personality to decide the learning path. Before considering this, make sure that your state supports this type of educational method.
Many factors go into consideration, but the most important are: the age of your child, how many hours they will spend learning, and the number of hours you will need to spend teaching them. These are the three most important questions that you need to address in the beginning.
Know Their Learning Style
Another vital factor is your child’s learning style. You should know that each kid goes through different learning curves. What works for one student may not be effective for another. For reference, below are examples of the different types of learners:
- Visual Learner – Roughly 30% to 35% of students are classified as visual learners, which means that they respond best to images. Children who are visual learners prefer materials like diagrams, pictures, videos, and tables. They also find it easy to remember faces and physical appearances. They have a vivid imagination and remember what they see.
- Auditory Learner – Auditory learners respond best to sounds and information said out loud. They talk constantly and frequently ask questions. They also enjoy listening to music and excel during recitation. With these types of students, it is best to use audiobooks and auditory files. You can also focus on reading aloud to them and using phonics when teaching.
- Kinesthetic Learner – Children who are kinesthetic learners are constantly moving. They tend to have a short attention span and may lose interest easily. This type of student processes information by feeling, touching, and experiencing. They enjoy physical activities and learn best when they are moving around. You can use games to enforce learning or engage in experiments and activities that include movement.
Set Up a Dedicated Learning Space
Just as we adults need a home office setup when working, children also need a dedicated space that they will easily associate with learning. A spare room can be the perfect place. However, if you are working in a small space, then an area away from loud electronics, such as the television and stereos, will do.
Since your child will be spending a couple of hours learning, it is also advised that you choose an area with proper lighting to avoid eye strain. Somewhere near the window is a great spot since it can be reached by daylight.
Your child’s study area doesn’t necessarily have to look like the ones you see on Pinterest. As long as you provide your child with a proper desk and chair, your student at home will be comfortable enough to stay in that space for a few hours.
Invest in Essential Electronics
A laptop and desktop computer are two of the basic gadgets being used in homeschooling. However, many students also have a backup device like a tablet since finding PC repair services for a malfunctioning computer can be hard to find now that there’s a pandemic. Other items that you will need in a homeschooling setup are:
- web camera
- extension or outlet that can safely support all devices
Change can be hard but only in the beginning. If this is your first time homeschooling your child, know that you are not alone. You can get a lot of help not just on the internet but also around you. So, rest easy, and happily embark on this new journey with your child.