Now We’re Homeschooling?

(I originally posted this on Facebook. It resonated with so many people that I decided to make it available here, even though it’s not really art-related. If I can answer any homeschooling related questions for you, please contact me!)

If your kids’ school suddenly closed their doors and told you to teach them at home, are you homeschooling?

I’m VERY much ok with you calling it whatever works for you, but I want you to know: 

What you’re doing is HARDER than typical homeschooling. 

Yes, homeschooling is hard work, but in a ‘normal’ week of homeschooling, we follow a schedule we know works for us because we developed it over years of trial and error. We use curricula we’re all familiar with-  we just do the next lesson. After we get our work done, we meet up with friends at our homeschool community day, church/youth group, Boy Scouts, and sports. We go to libraries and visit grandparents. 

If your kids’ school suddenly closed its doors, I’m guessing you’re spending a lot of bandwidth trying to figure out what each child is doing, how are they doing it and what’s your responsibility in all this. Meanwhile, your kids are trying to figure out what’s allowed, what’s expected, and how to translate their in-school work habits to work-at-home habits. Meanwhile, we’re all wondering if we’re going to get sick, why the shelves are bare at Walmart, and if we should we be more worried or less? Maybe you’re also trying to figure out how to work a full-time job from home while homeschooling

If you hit a wall, please don’t think you’ve tried homeschooling and failed. This crazy thing you’re doing isn’t the same as what we call homeschooling. In fact we need a new name for it… “Quarantine Schooling” maybe? 

Whatever you call it, give yourself, your kids, and the online teachers a lot of grace. Give yourselves time to get used to a whole new thing that’s never been done before. (Quarantine Schooling is a new thing that’s never been done before, right?) When you’re struggling with something specific, ask your friends how they’re handling it. Maybe ask a homeschooler if they’ve faced the same battle. 

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