As we enter the half term, it’s time to ask: what kind of home-schooling parent are you?
From the “Time Maximiser” to the “Community Caller”, can you find your style?
The UK’s leading online tutoring service – MyTutor – profile the different approaches and discuss how EdTech can help.
This week would ordinarily have been May half-term, providing a much-needed break for kids and some time for those sitting exams to focus on their studies. However, since UK schools closed in March and GCSEs and A-Levels have been cancelled, students may now be finding themselves in very different situations.
Parents, too, have been thrown in the deep end of continuing their children’s education at home. Here MyTutor – the UK’s leading online tutoring service – break down the different parenting styles that have emerged after ten weeks of home-schooling:
The “School of Life” educator
Some parents have taken lockdown as a chance to teach their kids some life skills that aren’t on the curriculum. Budgeting, D.I.Y., cooking, cleaning and gardening all keep kids busy and set them up for life.
The “Divide and Rule” duo
For families with more than one parent at home, teamwork makes the dream work. These parents split up the weekly schedule by giving each other shifts, so one might look after the kids in the morning while the other works, and then swap over in the afternoon. Both get to keep working, and the kids don’t end up giving each other haircuts.
The Well-being Wizard
With all the changes and challenges that COVID-19 has presented, for some, keeping kids calm and emotionally well is the priority above all else. They might try yoga, gardening, art projects and long walks where possible. Some focused learning in subjects their kids enjoy also boosts their mood by giving a sense of achievement, helping to reduce anxieties surrounding the return to school.
The Hands-on Helper
For this parent, no subject is off-limits for them to teach – or try to. Not a Maths maestro? No problem. They’ll study all night to get up to speed. With their teacher hat firmly on, their kids can expect a full weekly schedule of lessons covering every corner of the school curriculum. We salute their dedication, and hope they catch a break too!
For parents who want to keep their kids learning but don’t have the time – or the expertise – to teach themselves, many keep everything going by outsourcing to an expert. With one-to-one online tuition, kids get to learn from a dedicated tutor who knows the school curriculum. Parents don’t need to read up on long-forgotten subjects, and with MyTutor, they get the fun of talking to a tutor who’s at a top UK uni and just a few years older.
The Community Caller
Although everyone is staying at home at the moment, lots of parents have reached out to their extended families, school Whatsapp groups, friends and neighbours to get help when home-schooling their kids. An uncle who’s a Maths whizz doubles very well as a tutor for weekly lessons on Zoom. Staying in touch with other parents provides somewhere to swap tips and share favourite learning resources when things feel tricky.
Some savvy mums and dads out there see time as something that can be used strategically. They might prioritise just core subjects or what their child enjoys most to keep education on track without overdoing it. With a few hours of focused learning every week, kids can spend the rest of their time doing extra-curricular learning or other home projects that keep them happy and busy.
Bertie Hubbard – CEO and Co-Founder of MyTutor – comments on the role EdTech has at home:
“This half term presents an opportunity to reflect on the type of teachers parents have had to become and where they may need some additional support. Globally, now more than ever, EdTech is supporting students of all ages around the world – from group Zoom calls to one-to-one tutoring that are helping to fill the gap since schools have been shut.”
“As today’s learners are forced to work from home, the integration of portable devices and EdTech allows teaching to be taken everywhere and gives students more flexibility in how they work and encourages them to work creatively, immersed in innovative methods of teaching.”
“Students are able to move around, switch groups, carry on with differentiated tasks and continue where they last left off. The physical educational environment has been transformed almost beyond recognition through the introduction of technology in the wake of Coronavirus.”