WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The buildings may be closed but school is in session. Many Kansas parents are now forced to educate their children from home.
Amy Riel said getting her 5-year-old and 7-year-old son to focus on their schoolwork at home has been a struggle.
“When they’re at home, they see home as a place to play and relax not a place where they have to do a bunch of school work,” said Riel.
She’s also working from home as a high school teacher and said juggling it all is a challenge.
“I’m at my workload capacity. I don’t know that I could do anymore than what I’m doing,” said Riel.
Olivia Hayse has been homeschooling her two children going on four years. She knows a thing or two about homeschooling success.
To establish a learning environment, she said don’t be afraid to set up and tear down your child’s school materials at the start and end of their day.
“It really helps set the kids mind when it’s like ok, get the computer out, get the books out, and then when they go up at the end of the day, they can kind of breath a sigh of relief that they got all the things done that they need to do. We do our homeschool right at the kitchen table. Then, at the end of the day, all of our supplies go into this cabinet. That’s kind of out of the way so it’s a very transitional space,” said Hayse.
Having a routine is important but be flexible.
“We have a start time, we have a lunchtime, and we have a time we like to be done by, but ultimately, it’s more of an order of things that we like to have done so that we can have some built-in flexibility.”
Remove distractions like smartphones and iPads.
“Because you know even if it’s in their pocket or across the room, it’s still a distraction,” said Hayse.
If you’re balancing work and school from home, it helps to have a communication system in place.
“My husband has where he’ll put a post-it note on his office door when he has like a really important call you know,” said Hayse. “If you have a test going on or an experiment that might be loud just kind of communicate with the other folks in your home and it can work.”
And if you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a break.
“I give myself little mommy timeouts to where I just need to go outside and take a few deep breaths and come back in. Just give yourself some grace, give the kids some grace it is ok to take a reset,” said Hayse
Hayse offers more homeschooling tips on her blog ‘The Mama Marketer.’