Whilst we are in unprecedented times with school closures, we have put together some ideas for you and your child/children to continue with their learning whilst at home. Please click on the appropriate year group for your child for age appropriate ideas.
Children respond really well to a routine and we are suggesting the following timetable to help parents keep children learning over the period of time of closures:
We do understand that with younger children around, set times of learning are not possible, this is why we are suggesting only timings on areas of learning, not a prescriptive time to do things. Also a good idea is to have a box with a few games, puzzles, construction toys available and swap the contents every few days.
Breakfast and getting dressed at the usual time (this will help with getting them ready to learn)
Ensure electronic devices are put away for this period unless it is needed for the learning practise.
Start the day with some English. At school we tend to spend 10 minutes on handwriting, 10 minutes with phonics in KS1 spelling rules in KS2 (reading and spelling words with a focussed sound) 20 minutes on reading with a partner and practising fluency and understanding with questions about what we have read. We then have a focussed writing session which could be based on a book that we have read, a focus on a grammar point such as different type of sentences or diary or letter writing. Children need a focus to write on as too broad a direction (write a story) can mean frustration. Again this is a flexible amount of time dependent on age but most children need 20-40 minutes of writing something a day.
Everyday story reading to all of the children is a great part of the school day and is something that should continue at home, no matter what age they are or if they can read independently or not. We like to set aside 20 minutes a day to do this so that we can talk about it too.
Maths should also be a daily activity. At school we like to practise key skills daily such as number bonds, timetables, doubles, counting and place value for around 10 minutes. We then focus on an area of learning and talk about strategies to solve problems. Children then have time to practise that skill independently to see if they can do it on their own. This can be 30-40 minutes. Telling the time is something that a lot of children struggle with so this could be a daily aspect of home (particularly if you set a time that they can use electronic devices!).
Then we suggest that you pick a different wider curriculum focus for the children to learn about each day. It may be learning a song or a dance to perform. It might be research. It might be a science experiment they have seen on youtube. It might be cooking lunch with you or baking. It might be recreating an artist’s picture or making something.
In between these periods of learning there should be active breaks- a walk, just dance, supermovers on cbbc etc..
If you are finding doing anything with them tricky to start with, the most important thing is to read, read, read. This is what makes a difference.
Most importantly keep safe, keep healthy and keep happy. In uncertain times use the opportunities of spending time as a family to your advantage.