Learning at home: Help!

By Sherry Heavin

Parents/Grandparents how are you doing? By this time, I am sure the children are no longer excited to be out of school and it is beginning to be more difficult to keep them busy and active unless they are participating in eLearning. Children love routine (first article), they love to do something new (second article encouraging you to let them learn by working with you), and now the third article – Help! What am I suppose to do with these kids?
COVID-19 is giving us all a glimpse of life outside our routine. If you have school age children and they attend in your local district, I am sure you now have great respect for the teaching profession.  Teachers work really hard for far too little wages. And, it is more and more important for everyone to stay home and not get out if at all possible. That increases the likelihood that children are more restless than ever and you are hearing a constant voice in your ear saying “I’m bored.” Well the anecdote for boredom is curiosity and hard work. 
First of all, if you do not use eLearning and have packets from the teachers completed, you might want to try this. I’m also assuming you have some sort of device connected to the internet in your home. Assign each child in your household a task of learning something new about a topic/animal/ history. Perhaps they liked the Lincoln Children’s Zoo link and would like to choose an animal to learn more about, or if they are older and a history buff, maybe they would like to research a Civil War battle, a National Monument or a person of interest. They could spend their free time (when not exercising in fresh air, cleaning their room and completing teacher’s work packet) researching the topic. 
As they research, have them make notes (or draw a picture for younger students) and list/draw all of the facts they can find on a sheet of paper. Their assignment then would be to bring those papers to the dinner table and that becomes your topic of discussion at dinner. I’ve heard many people say they do not sit down to eat together – they just graze. Believe me, if you sit down and eat with your children you will learn more about them and what they are learning and interested in than you can imagine. Besides, it will give you the opportunity to teach table manners, too!
Below you’ll find a couple more links that you might find useful this week:
Younger Students:
• Goodnight with Dolly (Dolly Parton reads aloud each Thursday evening)
• https://www.imagination library.com/
• Use Facebook, Insta-gram and YouTube and search #OperationStory Time
• You’ll find many children’s authors reading aloud.
Upper Level Students:
• Tour Yellowstone National Park.
• https://www.nps.gov/ yell/learn/photosmultimedia/virtualtours.htm
• Explore the surface of Mars on the Curiosity Rover.
• https://accessmarswith google.com/
Enjoy this time with your children and make it a great memory for them! Look at their unique qualities and help them see what a blessing they are to our world!



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