Although we homeschool, this past school year, specifically our spring quarter was off kilter. The schools in our school district closed down for the school year mid March. None of the children returned to school after spring break.
Our family like many other homeschool families was greatly impacted by this change. It wasn’t just the schools that shut down. To start, the public libraries were closed. Our enrichment classes were canceled. Our Co-ops were canceled. Plays were canceled. Our clubs and music lessons were canceled, later to become zoom meetings. Our competitions were delayed. Our sports were canceled. Our parks were closed. All of the ways that we enriched our son’s life outside of our home were no longer available. We became mandated unsocialized homeschoolers. 🙂 Covid19 forced the socialization myth into our daily lives. Finishing up our sixth year of homeschooling was the first time my homeschooler was not socialized. Albeit neither were any of the other children in our State. Which is an interesting situation.
I wonder how many kids were happier being educated at home by their parents. I wonder how many were mistreated. I wonder how many parents were thrown into quarantined schooling and thought they were homeschooling. I wonder how many started homeschooling. I wonder their thoughts on quarantined schooling. Some may have thought they can do this, others may have thought, there is no way. I do wonder how quarantined schooling will change the general public’s thoughts of home education. For the good or the bad?
Quarantined Schooling is not Homeschooling
When a family chooses to homeschool their children they are choosing a lifestyle that affords them the ability to educate at home. This is not a light decision. Months and years are dedicated to researching curricula, schedules, reading lists, learning styles, teaching styles not to mention the legal research.
Quarantined Schooling was thrust upon school districts and families. There were no plans in place. Teachers scrambled to stay in contact with their students and scrambled to put together packets to keep them learning while they were home. Some teachers worried about those students who found school a refuge from home. There was not time to prepare to convert the classroom schedule into a home study packet. Families were not prepared to start educating their children without guidance and support from seasoned teachers or seasoned families.
So if you are reading this and contemplating homeschooling, don’t be discouraged by quarantined schooling. If you are ready to educate your children at home, you can. Some days it is a walk in the woods and others it feels like you are running from the forest fire. The rewards far out way any fire that might arise.
Although, we continued to educate at home during quarantine, the manner in which we educated changed greatly. The first couple of weeks of cancellations, I have to be honest, came as a relief. I started to rethink how we homeschool and how many activities we are involved in. It was nice not to worrying about what we had to get done before we had to get somewhere.
As time went on those last months (we finish at the end of May) of school were very productive. We wrapped up our school year strong. And my poor homeschooler was working as hard as ever and the neighborhood was filled with kids riding their bikes and playing in their yards. More so than during the summer. The libraries, pools and summer activities were not available, so the kids hit the streets.
I don’t know what our school year will look like this Fall. I hope we can resume where we left off. But for now we plan on spending a lot of time outside exploring Iowa’s beauty while we learn and grow throughout the summer months.
Try not to worry about your child’s education or lack there of. Kids are resilient and will quickly catch up. If you’d like some tips on keeping your kids learning during the summer months you can check out my post here. I also have posted what we plan on working on this summer. You can check that out here.
If you need a walk in the woods Iowa surprisingly has many places to visit. Enjoy your time with your family during this pandemic.
A few of Iowa’s Forests
Stephans State Forest in Chariton Iowa
Yellow River State Forest in Harpers Ferry Iowa
Christiansen Forest Preserve in Huxley Iowa
Mcfarland Park in Ames Iowa
Fellowship Forest in Madison County
Shimeck State Forest in Farmington Iowa
White Pine Hallow State Park in Dubuque
Pine Lake State Park in Eldora Iowa
Backbone State Park in Dundee Iowa
Ledges State Park in Boone Iowa
Effigy Mounds National Monument in Harpers Ferry Iowa
George Wyth State Park in Waterloo, Iowa
Rikes Peak State Park in McGregor, Iowa
We are working on some new projects that I hope to share soon.
Happily Homeschooling ~ Bridget Anne