When At-Home Learning Feels Hard
I have recently been struggling with a serious case of writer’s block. So, I reached out to a good friend who happens to be a talented writer and told her I had writer’s block. And she said, “write about that...seasons when you just don’t know what to teach.” And I thought, “Yeah, of course.” Whether teaching in the classroom, or teaching my own children at home, I have always found that inspiration ebbs and flows, but even without inspiration, learning can happen. So what can a caregiver do when they don’t feel inspired to teach, but still want to engage their children at home?
Double Check Expectations. Teaching and learning is about quality of learning more than quantity. Co-Teach founder (and good friend) Gretchen was recently talking to a mom who was trying to help her learner with reading. After school and after work, the mom and her daughter would spend 30 minutes to an hour reading and working on different sounds. It was brutal, for the mom and the child. When Gretchen asked the mom how long her daughter would engage in lessons before it became difficult to hold her attention- the mom said about 15 minutes. So they decided to just try to practice for 15 minutes. And that was that! The mom was able to be more inspired, because planning for an enjoyable 15 minutes was a lot more manageable than an hour of struggle. Now, you may be wondering, "what about the other 45 minutes, what did they do?" Well, lots of things - listened to an audio book, watched TV while the mom cooked, Face-timed with a family member or the child simply played with dolls or they played pretend together. But the transition from work to play was much more smooth and mom and daughter enjoyed their learning together more- which made it more helpful.
Share something you as a parent/caregiver enjoy with your learners. Several