CENTENNIAL, Colo. — For many parents, the transition to remote learning has brought on additional stress. But some may have also discovered unexpected benefits to home schooling. That doesn’t surprise Laura Garn, a mother of four who coaches other home school parents.
“What I’m hearing (from parents) is, ‘My kids are getting a lot more sleep,’ ‘They’re playing with each other,’ ‘They’re getting a lot of outside time,’ ‘They’re having more time to dive into some of their passions and interests,’” she said.
Garn, who lives in Centennial, said home schooling and remote learning are both difficult, but there are ways to reduce stress for both the parents and children. Her first piece of advice to parents is to recognize that they’re in charge, even if schools are still providing the lessons.
“We’re all the experts on our own kids,” sh said. “We know them best.”
She suggested parents develop a consistent rhythm for school each day. For example, she said it’s helpful to get most of the day’s work completed before lunch time. But that may vary depending on the parent’s and child’s needs and personalities.
“If a schedule works best for your child, then do that,” she said. “I like to give my kids a list.”
She said kids should be expected to complete many of the items of the list on their own. Parents should plan for which items will require more of their attention, especially if they are working from home, while overseeing remote learning.
Garn’s most important tip is that almost anything can be a learning opportunity.
“There are so many people who go off to college — they’ve never cleaned their house, they don’t know how to clean a bathroom,” said Garn.
She suggested parents can use this time at home to teach those life skills.
For parents who are interested in home schooling, Garn is offering free online seminars Wednesday, April 29, and Thursday, April 30. You can register for the seminars here.