Homeschooling can feel like a daunting task to parents. It is a big responsibility to take on teaching your child, and there’s a lot to plan and organize. To have a successful first day of homeschooling, parents need to be prepared.
Here are tips on what to do on the first day to make it a success.
Plan Out Your Day
Before homeschooling even starts, plan out what you want to accomplish for the day’s lesson. Look at your curriculum to pick out which topics and activities you’d like to cover. Leave some flexibility for when diagrams, reading aloud, or playing a game might be necessary.
Make sure you have allotted enough time for lunch, breaks, and physical activity. The key is to set a schedule that helps the student stay on track and visualize their goals for the day.
Set Up a Learning Space
Creating a separate learning area from the rest of the house can help your child focus and keep them from being distracted. Set up a school corner in your living room or an unused bedroom as a designated learning environment.
Stock it with books, school supplies, clocks, and a laptop or Chromebook. Place comfortable seating and have a bulletin board where students can tack on sticky notes to stay organized. If feasible, have good natural light in the area, as this can help promote productivity and help spot check for comprehension.
Gather Materials for Learning
Once the learning space is ready, begin to prepare the necessary materials for that day. This can include textbooks, worksheets, pencils, scissors, etc.
Gather whatever is needed to complete the tasks of the day – if the lesson includes a physical activity, make sure a space is ready and have the necessary materials ready to go. Ensure that the instrumentation or materials are in good repair and make sure to check the safety of any objects or games that might be used.
Going Over the Rules and Expectations
Talk to your child about the expectations for the day. Discuss what they are supposed to do and what they won’t be doing. Setting boundaries and enforcing them helps create a successful home learning experience that is safe and productive.
Children should be aware of when the school day commences and when it is finished, as well as the expected behavior during the day.
Introduce the Curriculum
Take the time to introduce the schedule and curriculum for the day to your student. Review what will be covered and cover any new concepts that may be presented. This gives the student insight into what they will be doing and allows them to understand what is expected of them.
Ask questions to engage the student on the material and help promote comprehension and learning.
Start with Something Engaging
When the day starts, begin with something engaging. This can be a game or a fun activity that gets the student thinking on the material they are learning.
Start with something easier, giving confidence to the student to draw them in. As the day progresses, keep the activities interesting, with the end result being that the student is engaged, learns the material, and has fun doing it.
Giving students a chance to express their thoughts on the material or ask questions as they come can also help foster learning. Allow the students to reason, speculate, and discover knowledge on their own.
Guide their thought process, help them make connections, and explain any difficulties that may arise. Encouaracing conversation helps the student understand, with the goal being the student has a full grasp of the material.
Provide Positive Reinforcement
Give positive feedback during the lesson to provide reinforcement for good behaviors. Something as simple as a thumbs up or pat on the back can go a long way in showing your student that you appreciate their hard work and observe good habits. Praising for a job well done or for comprehending a difficult material can give the student confidence and positively shape their behavior to focus on the lesson.
A reminder to step away from the subject if the student gets overwhelmed or overwhelmed can help maintain the level of concentration they need. A break can include stretching, playing a game, or taking a walk around the block.
This allows them to take a breather and come back to the material with a fresh set of eyes and a refreshed mindset.
Adjust and Readjust as Needed
When trying out a lesson or activity, be prepared to adjust as needed. Take a step back, assess how the lesson is going and what needs to be changed to keep it engaging and productive.
If something didn’t work out as planned, don’t sweat it. Take some time to readjust and try something new.
Give the Responsibility to the Student
As the year goes on, start transitioning more authority to the student. Allow them to choose their own activities, plan out their own lessons, and carry out tasks with your guidance. This gives them confidence and responsibility, which will be beneficial later on.
At the end of the day, review what was learned that day. Doing a brief recap of the material can help explain and solidify the knowledge in the student’s mind.
It can also help catch any misunderstandings or difficulties the student has with the material.
To be successful on the first day of homeschooling, parents need to be well-prepared. Setting up a designated learning space, gathering materials, and enforcing rules and expectations are steps that need to be taken. Introduce the curriculum to the student, start with something engaging, encourage conversation, provide positive reinforcement, and step away if necessary.
It’s important to readjust when needed, give the student more responsibility, and end the day with a review. With all of these tips, the first day of homeschooling can be productive and successful for both parent and student.