With Children Now at Home All Day, It Helps to Be Reminded that We’ve Been Training for This Moment from Day One.
Around the world, most schools have shut down through summer. For those of us in the United States, that means for the remainder of the school year. In Washington state we got our notice on Monday. I could almost hear a virtual yelp rise up when I read the text. Many of us were holding out on the hope that homeschooling was a temporary one or at most two-month reality.
After taking a deep breath, looking around at the four that surround me, I realized, what a wonderful opportunity.
At this point, I think it is helpful to divulge a standard protocol that educators across the states are taught when they begin practice. Many parents may not be aware that pre-K to high school, teachers are told that family knows best when making decisions for the best of the child. Yes, there are cases where this line has to be negotiated, but in most cases, teachers look to the parents to understand what is best for each student. I share this point to remind parents that we may be more qualified than we give ourselves credit for.
If we think about it, we are and will be our children’s first teacher. Who taught them how to use to take their first step, or use the toilet? Who was there to marvel at their first word and encourage them to discover more? Who wiped their tears and taught them how to understand and process their feelings? Who taught them how to negotiate, compromise and even sacrifice?
We did. And now, we find ourselves with our children all day, teaching them their next first steps, whether it is in algebra, social skills, chores, or self-management and care (right now I’m focused on teaching my boys the importance of showering regularly, a skill I’m sure their wives and children will thank me for in the future).
Yes, there will be daunting days (I just had one myself just yesterday). But, when was life all rainbows and unicorns? Even my four-year-old daughter knows that rain clouds are a must to the landscape. I hope we can take this amazing opportunity to be home with our children.
Things have slowed down, we don’t have to rush, but take our time to intentionally invest in not just academics, but life skills and traditions that can guide them for a lifetime, even get passed through generations. Who knows, this generation of homeschooled kids might be the next greatest generation who redefines the 21st century for the better – and we can part of the credit (smile).
We’ve got this, and we want to be here to be your cheerleader and support