Wednesday 30 December 2020

4 Ways to Re-Think Homeschooling

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With another lockdown and changing tiers/restrictions looming on the horizon for the new year, many parents may be again faced with re-thinking how they will need to home-school their children. Whether you were a stay at home parent previously or are now working remotely, educating your children from home can seem a daunting prospect, especially for those who may not be the usual primary caregiver. 

Here are four great ideas to help you face the challenge of home-schooling and come out with your sanity still in place.  

1. Rethink Your Routine

Whether your children are just starting their early years at school or are preparing for exams at secondary school, re-thinking your routine is vital when it comes to successful home-schooling. Just as with work, giving the day structure can help you feel more in control and makes it much easier to break down the curriculum of home-school classes. 

Planning in regular breaks for play and food are also essential in keeping children motivated and on track. It can be tempting to try and cram all set activities into a few hours in order to allow you time to do other things. However, this is likely to end in disaster and can cause tension, frustration and burnout for both children and parents alike. If your children are resistant to home-schooling, let them help you to decide the routine too. Why not try creating a fun and colourful chart that will map out the day? 

Allowing older children to have a greater degree of autonomy can really help too, so why not let them choose which areas of study they feel they need to focus on first when planning your home-school schedule.  

2. Create Special Learning Areas 

Another great practical way that you can get more out of home-schooling this second time around is to try and create special learning areas that are just for use during home-school hours. You don't need to have a lot of space at home in order to do this effectively. 

For example, with teepee tent activities you’re able to provide a fantastic, unique and most importantly separate place to teach your child. It also means that once the school day is over, you can put your tee-pee tent away and transform your space from a home-school into just a home again. With the pandemic requiring the majority of people to spend much more time at home than normal, it is important to create separate spaces so that your child can find it easier to focus on work without distractions. It also makes it easier to then switch off from home-schooling at the end of the day too.  

3. Ask for Teacher Support 

When the first lockdown started in March 2020, many parents, especially dads, were thrust into the role of teacher alongside all their other current life commitments. Lots of parents understandably felt under a great deal of pressure to perform well for their children and create a home-school environment that perfectly mirrored how their child was learning at school. 

However, as time went on and the lockdown continued for months, it became clear this was not achievable or even a practical solution. If you felt under this sort of pressure during the first lockdown, then learn from the experience and be sure to ask for support. Schools and teachers are always on hand (remotely, of course!) to provide support when it comes to learning materials and giving practical advice as to how you can best help your child to learn from home.  

4. Give Yourself a Break 

We all know that being a teacher is hard work, so trying to be a teacher, parent and provider is simply setting yourself up for failure. One of the big positive lessons to come out of 2020 was that it highlighted how many parents, particularly dads, do not discuss their mental health and the stress associated with the sudden home-schooling responsibilities of the first lockdown.

Just as children have playtime at school, parents also need regular breaks from planning and conducting home-schooling lessons too. If there is more than one caregiver in the house, taking home-schooling in turns can really help. It is also a great idea to check in with friends and family on a regular basis, especially those who may be in a similar childcare position, so that you can be reminded you are not alone and that it is a communal situation.  

No matter how you choose to home-school your children, always remember that you are the one in control of the situation. Just as with a normal school day, the key to success is planning, regular breaks and being sure to switch off from it all at the end of the day. After all, at least with home-schooling, there's no need for homework - result! 


**This is a collaborative guest post.**


  1. Great tips! It is definitely important to ask for teacher support if it is needed. We sometimes did in the first lockdown when we were unsure.

  2. Great ideas and tips . I did struggle and emailed the teachers . We are all here to help each other aren’t we

  3. I wish you and all the parents doing home schooling all the best because I know its not easy but I do think you tips are very helpful.

  4. I imagine home schooling must be quite tough, but, I think it could be good fun and a great time to bond well with your children too. Education for parents and children alike. These are great tips.

  5. Thanks for the tips. This is again reality for the next few weeks, so I have to get into gear and have a rethink. Mich x

  6. These are really great tips. The first time around, we didn't have much of a structure or routine and that definitely showed. Now we're up and ready to go with everything printed by 9 and it's much better.