Homeschooling Tips for Difficult Times

By freshlyplanted - 7:28 AM

You'll see that we skipped week three in our homeschool journey. My grandfather passed away the weekend before last, and every time I sat down last week to write the words wouldn't come. Not even words to explain what was happening, which seem so simple to write now. While it wasn't our best school week, we still got quite a few things done. It's not our first time homeschooling through tragedy- this was the hardest time- so I've learned a bit about keeping up schooling when life gets hard. 

Homeschooling Tips for Difficult Times

  • Find your minimum: At the beginning of the week, right after we'd found out the news, I took time to let go of my weekly expectations. The kids were sad, and I wanted to respect their grief so I consciously went through our school agenda for the week and removed everything but the barebones of our curriculum. 
  • Supplement your learning
    • Audio Books: A fun way to supplement learning! My family lives three hours away, so we had a lot of time in the car together. To get the most out of an audio book, I like to pause it intermittently and check in with the kids: "Who are the characters so far?" "What just happened?" "What do you think will happen next?" Easy questions like these help kids build reading comprehension strategies that then help with written material, too. Some audio books we enjoy: The Penderwicks, The Children of Green Knowe 
    • Learning Books: Right now we're reading the "Life of Fred" series, which the kids love. Each book introduces math concepts through easy, kid-friendly, very funny stories. Isia enjoys reading by herself during quiet time! So I made sure to pack our current book (see link) for bedtime reading, since the chapters are quick & it's great, low-key learning to discuss the end-of-chapter questions together.

Tips on homeschooling when life gets hard

  • Learn From It: There were quite a few hands-on learning experiences last week that had nothing to with our curriculum. We learned how to dress for a visitation & funeral. How to shake hands and properly introduce ourselves to adults, especially during the visitation. We learned what's helpful- getting water & extra Kleenexes for Great-Grandma, and what's not helpful. We learned what grief looks like, and had some great, age-appropriate conversations about death. 
  • Let it go: Lastly, it's extra important to take care of yourself. During the week, the kids watched several episodes of  "Reading Rainbow" & "Wild Kratts" so I could recharge and work through my own grief. I think honoring & being present for my own grief made me more compassionate to my children's as well. 

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