Transitioning from Public/Private School to School-at-Home
Covid 19 has significantly impacted families across the globe. Nationally, as well as here in Hawaii, it has meant cancellation of public events and closure of restaurants, stores, services, businesses and our schools. Families are dealing with fears and uncertainties in all aspects of their daily lives – employment, health, social relationships.
The hundreds of families in Hawaii who home educate their children, according to the homeschool law, made this decision by choice and after much prayer and thought. But with the closure of both public and private schools, many families have been thrown into a situation with little preparation as to how they will educate their children at home.
If you are one of these families, Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii is here to provide information, tips, and resources to help you teach your children at home during this challenging time.
Dad and mom, you love your children. You want the best for them. And you are probably doing a lot of what is suggested below. With the school closures, it may just mean doing more of what you are already doing.
Enjoy your time with your children.
- This is a stressful time for all. Your life, as well as the lives of your children, has been disrupted significantly. The time you spend with your children will give them a sense of reassurance. They need to know you are trusting God and that they can also trust Him.
“But as for me, I trust in You, O LORD; I say, ‘You are my God.’” –Psalm 31:14
- Your children miss their friends. They are dealing with cancelled events. They need you to guide them through disappointments. Just like all of us, we need to acknowledge the sovereignty of God in all things, even when we don’t understand it.
“But our God is in heaven; He does whatever He pleases.” –Psalm 115:3
Set aside more time with the Lord.
- Spend time reading God’s word and praying together with your children.
- Look up Bible verses on the attributes of God – God’s holiness, sovereignty, faithfulness, omniscience, omnipotence, mercy, grace.
- Memorize scripture together. Psalm 23 is always a favorite!
Develop a routine to organize your day.
- A routine will give your children a sense of stability and continuity during this time of fluidity.
- For starters, consider sticking with your current wake up schedule and routine.
- Include your children in the plan, especially your teens.
- Rather than an hour by hour schedule, consider blocks of time for different activities.
- Be sure to include outdoor time for the children.
- Blocks of time can include Bible and prayer, reading, games, life skills, outdoor play, ministry, academics.
Read, read, read with your children.
- Set aside 30-60 minutes a day for reading together or independently; you can break the reading time into a few blocks throughout the day.
- Good read-a-louds and audio books will still give your child a wonderful education.
- Have an older sibling read to a younger one – wonderful way for sibling bonding!
- After reading a chapter or book, your children can draw a picture of the story, write a summary or you can just talk about it.
Do activities together with your children.
- Play board games.
- Put together a puzzle.
- Play charades.
- Pursue a hobby.
- Make homemade cards or do other crafts.
Teach life skills such as:
- Planning, shopping, and cooking a meal
- Cleaning a room in the house
- Sorting, washing and folding laundry
- Washing and drying dishes
Minister to others
- Write letters to senior citizens or others restricted from going out to public places.
- Bake some cookies for a neighbor.
- Send your homemade card to someone who needs some encouragement.
- If you need to focus on the academics, determine what subjects will be covered.
- If the school has not provided online instruction or any structured assignments, you can put together your own plans.
- The major subjects – Language arts/English, math, social studies/history, and science – do not necessarily need to be done daily.
- It usually takes less time for individual work to be completed compared to classroom time.
- Reading, research and writing about a topic of interest may be particularly motivating for a junior high and high school student.
- Specific topics, geared to a child’s particular interest, can cover a more than one subject. For example, if a child is interested in dinosaurs, science, reading and writing can focus on dinosaurs.
- Teach Bible, social studies, and science to all your children together. Your expectations for each child depends on his/her abilities.
- Use the time for high school students to research and investigate different colleges.
- Start a journal. Try one of these prompts, “The best part of my day …” “My favorite breakfast is …” “Every 10 year old should …” Google for more ideas.
Go to www.Homeschoolfreedom.com and click on “Stuck at home” for a list of books, movies, podcasts, tours, educational sites, printables/downloads, and more.
If Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii can be of further assistance, do not hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org