What I Learned During the First Week of Homeschooling my Daughter

It’s safe to say the COVID-19 pandemic has completely flipped our world upside down. One of the biggest changes has been transitioning students from learning at schools to learning at home.

Depending on what part of the country you’re in, you’re dealing with unique regulations from your state. In Arizona, it was recently announced that all schools would remain closed through the end of the school year. That means at least seven more weeks of homeschooling children in quarantine.

My first week of homeschooling was a rollercoaster of emotions. I was scared, overwhelmed and clueless at times. Nonetheless, I survived. Below are five things I learned during my first week of homeschooling my daughter.

Repeat routines

As tempting as it can be to stay up late every night and snooze endlessly every morning, we must maintain our regular routines. As a single child, my daughter is a creature of habit. She thrives on a to-do list and routines and loves to know what to expect out of every day. Maintaining a similar routine as we did during school days has helped keep both of us sane during this quarantine. If you’re homeschooling too, I highly recommend sticking to your usual routines.

Stick to schedules

Just like with routines, schedules have been a lifesaver during this process. Since most teachers follow a daily schedule, it’s likely they’re already used to it and can follow one without major issues. I created a printable schedule on Canva and framed it so it can be easy to check off with a dry erase marker. My daughter loves checking off each box, and it’s allowed us to stay on track throughout the day.

Give yourself grace

I’ve always had immense respect for teachers, but I don’t think I’ve never fully understood their patience and dedication until now. Teaching is hard, and it takes a special individual to do the work. Unfortunately, teaching doesn’t come to me as easily as other skills do. That’s why it’s so important to give myself grace during this period. I’m not a teacher, and that’s OK. We’re in very unique circumstances, and trying your best is sometimes good enough.

Practice patience

Have you ever explained something 10 times without being able to get through to the other person? I have. Every single day while trying to homeschool my daughter. I’m not sure if teachers use a magic wand to get through to students, and if they do, I would like one, please. All jokes aside, patience is crucial during this quarantine homeschooling journey.

Have patience with yourself. Have patience with your child. Most importantly, have patience with each instructor who is navigating this new normal right along with you.

Get outside

If there’s something I’ve learned during my first week of homeschooling my daughter, it’s that children need constant breaks. Bathroom breaks, snack breaks, water breaks, and activity breaks. They need to be constantly shifting their focus and working on different activities to keep them engaged.

One of my daughter’s favorite things to do to get active is stepping outside. While parks and other outdoor activities are not available during the quarantine, our backyard is sufficient to getting her a breath of fresh air and keeping her active.

When getting outside, be mindful of the self-isolation guidelines to remain at least 6-feet apart from others.