The Sun says when news of the latest lockdown broke, parents all over the nation were horrified at the thought of having to homeschool their kids again.
Writer Samantha Brick said when lockdown 3 was announced she thought ‘here we go again’ with the mums complaining about having to homeschool.
“Instead of doing something sensible – like putting together a workable strategy – they took to social media to go on about what such closures would mean to their working and social lives.
“I feel sorry for kids who won’t get to see their friends or enjoy a structured environment, but I have zero sympathy for parents who haven’t got their act together in the third lockdown.
Don't mess up 2021
Irish Times gives you handy tips on how not to mess up homeschooling in 2021.
The article says firstly don’t replicate the classroom. “The core of primary school teaching is interactivity, group work, engagement, communication – and you can’t get that if a child is sitting on its own in a room with a laptop.”
Secondly, prioritise family sanity: Last time, she says she put herself under ferocious pressure to get through everything, as did her youngest child, and they both ended up getting frustrated.
Lesson three; don’t overload children. “The importance of a balanced approach, which took account of the children’s well-being as much as their intellectual development, and supported their learning.”
Homeschooling not 'optional'
HullLive says parents have been told homeschooling is not “optional” and asked to complete up to five hours of work per day with their children.
Unlike in the first lockdown, homeschooling in lockdown 3 must be a “direct replacement” for the learning which would have taken place had schools not been forced to close.
As part of the guidance, the DfE has told schools they must provide between three and five hours’ of learning per day, depending on their child’s age.
And schools are also expected to have systems for checking, at least weekly, whether pupils are engaging with their work, and to inform parents immediately where engagement is a concern.
Schools are accountable to Ofsted if they fail to meet the requirements.
'I've nothing left to give'
The Guardian says Ester Dusabe-Richards said her school has asked parents to send in evidence of home working every three days, which she said was well-intentioned but came across as “punitive”. It is sending about 10 worksheets a day, although pupils don’t have to complete everything, and the school doesn’t offer online learning because of safeguarding policies.
“When Gavin Williamson said kids needed three to five hours of homeschooling each day, for parents of five-year-olds, it essentially means you have to teach them,” she said. “To expect that of parents is laughable, even if they aren’t working. We’re not trained as teachers.”
“The rhetoric needs to be: we’re in a huge crisis, let’s forget about targets and support one another. I have an incredibly supportive line manager, but if I stop and think about everything I’ve got to do today, I would just keel over.”
Go Deeper into the story
Extra resources for teachers:
Extra resources for parents:
Looking Back On A Year Of Mass Homeschooling – The Guardian
Top 10 YouTube channels your kids can use for homeschooling – Daily Record
How to access free broadband to help homeschool your kids – WIRED
Why I won’t be homeschooling my kids this lockdown – METRO
From Shakespeare to drawing sausage dogs: the best TV for homeschooling – The Guardian
Furlough can now be used to help homeschooling parents – HMRC – Personnel Today
BBC to offer major education programme in lifeline to homeschooling parents – METRO
Homeschooling: What is personification, or an adverb? Key English grammar terms explained Comment – METRO
How to make homeschooling work for parents – RTE
Struggling to help your kids learn in lockdown and can’t afford a tutor? Here’s 14 free and low cost resources for homeschooling – This Is Money
The government will next review the tier system on the 30th December.
People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
- Fever or chills.
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing.
- Muscle or body aches.
- New loss of taste or smell.
- Sore throat.