There is still so much uncertainty right now pertaining to the rest of the current school year and for 2 of my kids this isn’t really an issue given that my son is done school already and one daughter is just completing her last few weeks of her 3rd year of University which is now being done all online, but then there is my youngest daughter who is just a few short months away from her High School Graduation and it’s beyond heartbreaking to think that she could miss out on the best and most defining moments of her High School career.
March Break is now officially over for us Ontarions and early this morning my daughter should have been returning home from her Graduation trip to Punta Cana with her friends, but instead she is at home unable to return to school for another 2 weeks, but whose kidding who, it’s going to be much longer than that and there has been quite a bit of buzz over the last few days that school could actually be cancelled for the remainder of the year.
As of right now there has not been any concrete plan put into place for this very possible and very devastating scenario, the one where my daughter doesn’t get to go to her High School Prom or attend her Graduation Ceremony but ya at least she has the accessibility to finish up her school year online if need be.
But not every child can do so, in fact many children and their families don’t have computer or internet access in their home and have always relied on the available and free resources from our schools and libraries.
And right now many parents are panicking and rightfully so, but can we just take a step back for a moment (we have nothing better to do right now anyways). We as parents are under a tremendous amount of stress, overwhelm and anxiety about how they are going to be able to “homeschool” their children when the reality is, we aren’t meant to homeschool our kids unless that was the path you had already chosen for them. And an even bigger reality right now is that if school is to be cancelled for the remainder of the school year we honestly have so much more to be worried about than learning fractions or Shakespeare (he needs to be scraped from the curriculum all together!).
I really don’t think I need to tell you what it means if this pandemic continues right through to the summer. Right now we need to support each other as parents and remember that many parents may be doing this parenting and social distancing thing alone or maybe they are coping with the stressors that come along with having a child with special needs or maybe they are new to Canada and haven’t yet grasped the English language or maybe they are dealing with some physical or emotional issues.
Whatever it is that someone else may be going through we need to stop judging each other. Whatever way you are able to get through today and tomorrow and the day after that, remember that you are a good parent and doing the best you can to survive these unprecedented times.
So for now while we wait for what’s to come in the next few weeks try to focus on some kind of routine, but one which allows room for lots of flexibility and lots of outdoor recess and naptime. Now is as good a time as ever to slow down because we ain’t going anywhere anytime soon. Also let’s remember that our main objective as parents and human beings right now is to keep you and your family safe as best you can.
There will be so many opportunities for teachable moments throughout the day and maybe it will happen while you’re baking cookies, laughing at a TV show or taking a walk outside or maybe while you’re playing a game or painting a picture. Homeschooling needs to be about self-care which as I said above is much more important right now than fractions (and for sure Shakespeare; sorry to my Shakespeare fans).
So considering my illness feels like it’s hit an iceberg and is causing me to suffer with daily headaches to boot, I will continue to try my best to be the best parent I know how by ensuring that my kids all get an A+ for doing their part in watching way too much Netflix while they help to flatten the curve.
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