Do you continue homeschooling during a crisis? Can you or should you? As waves of COVID-19 ebb and flow across the country, homeschooling during a crisis is a popular topic. For those who have been homeschooling for years, the daily schedules may not seem much different. But if you live in a harder-hit area, you may be feeling overwhelmed or having a hard time completing a normal day's lesson plan. You may be caring for other family members or neighbors, affected financially, or simply overwhelmed by the news. Your friends in other areas may not understand why you are upset, but I do.
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I have seen this virus affect our area, and I know what it can do to a homeschool family. You may have days as the homeschool parent that you have trouble focusing. Some days may feel more overwhelming than others, but that's ok.
What should you on days that feel very heavy during this heavy season?
You can take a break from homeschooling.
As I sit here in Seattle, where the COVID-19 outbreak began in the United State, I've had trouble keeping my mind at work. I know that it would be even harder if I was homeschooling right now. Local news is important, to keep us safe, but it is also emotional to listen to and is often draining. During our local outbreak, of course, I worry about my extended family with pre-existing conditions, and my children.
I encourage all homeschool parents with this: it's ok to take a break. This is a season, not forever. Homeschoolers have the flexibility to adapt. We are the teacher, administrator, principal, and school superintendent. We get to choose when we have school, when we have a vacation, whether it's a half-day or late start. It's ok to take a break.
When things get back to normal, remember that you can adapt your homeschool classes and curriculum to take advantage of current events and maximize learning.
After 9/11, we quickly changed our world studies to teach about the Middle East in our homeschool. You can take this opportunity to discuss statistics, STEM careers, history and government, civics, and voting. The teaching opportunities are endless when you homeschool.
As a homeschool parent in the United States, you are the one making the decisions and you get to decide.