Create a Daytime Schedule for Kids Who Are Stuck at Home Right Now
With schools across the country closing and parents trying to either work from home or seek childcare, this can easily be seen as one big long snowy day. Place them in front of the TV with snacks and wait. But experts agree that the best thing parents can do for children who are out of school for the next couple of weeks (or longer) is to put them on the schedule right away.
Schools across the country differ in whether they offer online learning options; even those who do this will have students who will not be able to participate because they do not have access to the technology they need. But more important than giving them homework or acting as a temporary home teacher is to create a schedule that reflects somewhat of their normal school day, and then stick to it.
Amy Joyce and Marie-Jane Williams write for the Washington Post :
Melanie Auerbach, director of student support at Sheridan School in the area, has some ideas on how to keep kids in the right direction during recess. Her top tip? Make a schedule and stick to it.
“Summer brain is a lack of schedule, routine, sleep,” says Auerbach. “They don’t forget how to read. … They have forgotten how to go to school. After the winter break, when the children return, it will take them a week to recover. After Daylight Saving Time, it will take them a week to reset. Changing their routine is very important. “
So while you don’t have to stand at the whiteboard and teach long division, you can help organize their day so that they stay in an academic mindset, with set start times, breaks, and different “subjects” throughout the day. day. Here’s one example:
I created a similar schedule for my nine-year-old son. He was resilient at first, because of course he wants to treat it like a snowy day or a couple of days home sick. But together we were able to come up with a plan like this:
My original schedule had more creative time for games, less time for reading and no breaks, that is, free time that he could spend on his own. These adjustments were enough to get him to work. For younger children who cannot read or tell the time, you can create a similar diagram with pictures to represent the activity and a timer to help them know when to move on to the next activity.
Such a schedule will be helpful if they are going to be at home with a parent or other guardian during school closings, but it can also help bring a little more consistency to their days if their care situation fluctuates from day to day.
Now is also a good time to rummage through their closets, drawers, and basements to bring old arts and crafts projects, science kits, puzzles, or other learning games they’ve forgotten to life. I pulled out several options that my son had long forgotten about to give him more options during his “creative play”.
He knows that he can also use this time to draw comics or create some LEGO masterpiece – and that he is responsible for figuring out what to do every day at this time – but I wanted to give him some fresh ideas. Because it looks like we’re in this for a long time.