May 14, 2020
You don’t need to turn your basement into a classroom or step into the shoes of a full-time teacher to stimulate your children and keep them learning during the lockdown. Juggling with telecommuting, family anxieties and shifting routines is already unsettling as it is. And, let’s face it, few of us have the knowledge or skills to replace our child’s teacher—thank you and hats off to all the teachers out there!
However, everyday life at home is a gold mine of learning opportunities for our kids, might as well take advantage of it under lockdown.
To learn math:
- Set up your own general store at home. Each household chore can earn your kids fake money (like monopoly dollars), which they can then spend on store treats or to purchase privileged activities (screen time).
- Give your child a budget to plan a meal and ask him or her to make a grocery list with the ingredients using online flyers.
- If there’s a recipe you’d like to try out, get the kids involved by asking them to read the recipe aloud and measure ingredients. Watch couple of family cooking shows and try out more complicated dishes together.
- Organize a family game night and put your child in charge of counting points and keeping score.
- If you’ve got a jar of spare change lying around, have your child roll and count coins.
To learn English:
- Ask your child to write down the grocery list you say aloud.
- Add a reading period to your routine… as a family! If you spend time reading as a parent, you will encourage your child to do the same.
- If your kids have passions that keep them busy under lockdown, ask them to give you an oral presentation on the subject.
To learn science:
- Appoint your children official plant sitters. Ask them to do the necessary research so they tend to each houseplant with proper care.
- Ask your child to give you a weather report for the day.
- Go for a walk and talk about the natural elements, flora and fauna around you: animals, plants, trees, cloud activity, stars and so forth.
- Introduce your kids to gardening by having them sow seeds in a vegetable plot or in pots on the balcony.
- Try science experiments. There are tons of websites with great ideas for all ages.
To practise French or a new language:
- Organize a movie night... in French or Spanish!
- Listen to songs in French and explain the lyrics to your child.
- Do you have budding song artists in the family? Have them to learn a song in a foreign language and put on a show for the family.
- Establish a French reading period.
Although there are many sources of learning material in our daily lives, two very useful online resources cannot be overlooked at this time. The essential government platform called Open School as well as our valued partner Alloprof, which offers a variety of online tools and homework help over the phone or by text messaging. Don’t hesitate to use these free resources!