Home Learning Activities - All Year Groups
Home Learning from Monday 23rd March 2020
These are extraordinary times that no one has had adequate time to prepare for. This is not homeschooling. This is an unprecedented emergency situation impacting the whole world. We need to keep perspective. Homeschooling is a choice, when a parent has considered, has planned for it and they have made the choice to be their child's school teacher in whatever form they choose . What we have now in the UK is at best distance learning, that’s why at Gusford we are using the term home learning rather than homeschooling or home education.
We have put a range of home learning activities on our website already, and are adding more ready for Tuesday, but we deliberately have not sent children home with paper work packs. There's no expectation on schools to be providing "schooling" for those few pupils attending from Monday, the National Curriculum has been suspended for the time being. Those parents now working from home are not going to be able to also become teachers. (I’m a working mum - and I know what a challenge it can be to work from home & care for children!).
We have deliberately gone for a range of activities because you as parents know your children best and you can choose things they will enjoy doing. Most of them are fun indoor activities that don’t require printing, sitting at a table or the use of books or paper or computers/tablets (but we’ve included a few like that as some children do indeed enjoy that style of learning). Have a look through our ideas with your child, together you can choose to do some of them or none of them that is up to you as parents. The most important thing is to keep them calm and safe, our activity ideas might help with that as boredom preventers.
We have shared as many fun indoor activities as we can find, and we will continue to do so, as you are going to have to spend a lot more time indoors with your children over the coming months than any of us are used to. Children do not need to be in school or sat at a desk to learn.
We will add new ideas over time to keep our home learning offer interesting and fresh. We are sharing offers of live broadcasts or lessons from celebrities or educationalists etc on our social media, there is no expectation that you will join in with any of these, we are sharing because we know some families will love them. Likewise we will share daily challenges on our Twitter feed as some of our children will love that - especially the Lego challenges, no one has to do these but we’d love it if you’d tweet us a photo if you do as it helps us to stay connected.
The DfE are working with the BBC to launch some new TV content to support learning during the closure, we’ll share more on this when we get an update. Sky have new channels planned on history and nature coming very soon. A lot of the big museums around the world offer virtual tours through their websites. There are so many resources that it can feel a little overwhelming. Be led by your child’s interests if you can, this is a great time for an older child to develop a passion and work on a project on a favourite theme. It is a great time for a younger child to do what they do best and learn through play. A lot of our activities are suitable for mixed aged family groups so siblings can work together on an activity, rather than trying to have 2 or 3 completely different tasks needing your support at the same time.
A word about schedules - we have been asked by some parents about how to timetable a typical day, particularly for our pupils who need or prefer order and routine. We’ve provided a suggested schedule, no one has to follow this, if it isn’t helpful to your family then please ignore and do what suits you. Let’s be honest, right now none of us really know what we are doing (well I certainly don’t!) we are all responding to events and trying to do the best that we can for our families.
I felt I needed to post this as I could sense the anxiety around all of this from some parents. You are doing enough. You are loving your kids and supporting them through a difficult time. Look after yourself. Minimising stress is absolutely vital in a time like this for mental health. Don't let this be something that stresses you.
Please just keep your children at home and safe, try out our activities if you wish, follow our links if you want to, but mainly just please stay safe and look after each other.