Homeschooling during the pandemic has many of us struggling. While our teachers continue to go above and beyond providing resources and assignments, the message for us as parents is to just do what you can.
So instead, we’ve compiled a list of real-life lessons your kids will actually enjoy
Bake a cake
What happens to a solid fat (butter or coconut oil) when it’s heated? How do raising agents work? What happens to the batter after it spends time in the oven? As you make a cake with your kids, talk about the science behind the magic. You should also get them to do all the measuring and weighing of ingredients, so they’re working with fractions, weights and conversions. You could even have them prepare a grocery list for the ingredients, sticking to a budget.
Have them read the recipe and follow the step-by-step instructions. Then talk about the nutritional value of the ingredients you use: How apple sauce, bananas or carrots are better for you as sweeteners than just sugar; or how you can bump up the protein by with nuts or nut flours. Last part: Pure joy, as you savor the freshly baked end results.
At last, teach children that the clean-clothes fairy is a myth. “Naturally, there are certain life skills that every child needs to become a well-functioning, independent human being — cooking, cleaning, and organization,” said Marie Heath, assistant professor of education at Loyola University Maryland. “I highly recommend these skills be taught, especially during a time when Mom and Dad have extra loads of dishes and laundry piling up.”
Learning how tools work
Knowing how to do basic repairs will foster independence and later on, save your child money when encountering something that needs fixing.
“There’s a huge opportunity here for parents to ensure their kids are still learning without ever opening a textbook. Children have the opportunity to learn life skills from their parents — the kinds of things many people don’t get the chance to learn until they are much older,” said by expert
Learn to relax
So soccer fields, monkey bars and basketball courts are closed for business right now. But your kid can still do something with their excess energy and big emotions at home through yoga. All you need is a little floorspace to lay out a mat or folded blanket. To do a more formal kids’ yoga class, you’ll need internet access too, but really, the most important thing about yoga is learning how to breathe.
You can keep the at-home practice simple, having your kid lie down on the floor with their eyes closed, while you talk them through stretches or tightening and relaxing their muscles, from head to toe. Encourage them to take slower and deeper breaths, with their hand on their belly, so they can feel their abdomen rise and fall. Older kids might enjoy learning about the origins and history of yoga too. Here’s a great resource that explains the basics.
Sew a button
Not only is basic sewing easy to learn but younger kids love this activity. “Learning such life skills are important because they equip your child with beneficial tools- which in turn produces self-confidence, knowledge, independence, assuming responsibility, and well-rounded human beings that contribute to the world around them
Engage in small talk
Your kids may do well talking to friends and family, but become shy around new people. How can you help teach the art of conversation? “Out in the world on their own, our kids will encounter many strangers — professors, coaches, advisors, landlords, store clerks, hairdressers, waiters, managers, and coworkers,” said Nancy Baker, managing editor of Child mode. “Our adult kids need to know how to look to these people in the eyes, clearly communicate with them, and possibly even advocate for themselves if need be.”