A Message From…
Terry Ann Williams-Richard, Your Personal Book Writing Coach and Founder of Personalized Educational Services, LLC
We are Courageous Voices Casting Visions while Celebrating Victories! This Writers’ Showcase is in celebration of completing our 30-Day Writing Project Challenge 2020 (July 13 – August 11). I am grateful for 16 other Sister Writers who agreed, on a variety of personalized levels of participation, to accept the challenge to join me on what turned out to be a transforming adventure. Daily Encouragement e-mails with inspirational quotes & writing tips; Weekly Zoom Call Check-Ins; access to daily interaction in the “A Writing Party!” Facebook group; and an occasional nudge or push from me are some of the benefits of this experience designed to promote daily writing, reaching writing/publishing goals, and uplifting each other. Over the next few days I will spotlight a sprinkling of the writing gifts from this magical group of courageous creatives. Today we celebrate Dr. Kim Porter! Write On, Sister Writer!
Contact me: at firstname.lastname@example.org for your own personalized transformational writing experience.
Five Social Activities for Homeschooling Families
by Dr. Kim Porter
Due to COVID-19, everything is being re-evaluated and revamped, from the way we buy our groceries, to the way we educate our children. As many school districts across the country wrestle with solutions for the 2020/2021 school year, many parents are joining the ranks of millions of families who have chosen to homeschool their children. Homeschooling is just that, educating children in the safety of their own homes. In the past, it was done for religious and social reasons. However, with the uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic, parents are electing to educate their children at home due to safety concerns. While some families are utilizing the online option from their school districts, others are using curriculum specifically designed for homeschooling families.
However, as far as extracurricular activities go, many homeschooling families find socialization to be a challenge during this pandemic. Many places which were once open to homeschooling groups are now closed, and large gatherings are being discouraged. School districts, colleges, and even professional sports face serious issues about conducting business as usual even with numerous safety protocols being implemented. As of today, we received the heartbreaking news of no college football this Fall. (Well, I guess we’ll have to wait until next fall to beat Michigan, but I digress!) The dilemma that faces new and veteran homeschooling families is what to do about socialization of their children. Here are five safe suggestions:
- Virtual Field Trips – Many places, such as zoos and museums, offer virtual field trips. Some may charge a small fee in order to produce revenue, while others may be done at no cost. Contact your local zoo or museum and inquire about a virtual field trip.
- Homeschooling and Co-ops – Homeschooling families can collaborate with co-ops for small-group activities. Co-ops mostly consist of “outschoolers”, students who learn in an extremely non-traditional environment. Homeschoolers can join co-ops for games, outdoor activities, field trips, etc. Contact a co-op in your area for more specific details.
- Outdoor Classes and activities – As much as possible, teaching should be done outdoors as a group. A parent who is proficient in a particular subject can teach students in a small group with social distancing protocols. Also, as a group activity, outdoor movie theaters, student talent shows, or gym classes can be conducted.
- Zoom Parties – By now, nearly everyone is familiar with Zoom. It has been used for everything from meetings, to graduations. Why not arrange a school “dance”? Let the students decide on the theme, music, and time.
- Mentoring – Finally, with all of this pandemic teaching, don’t forget about you. Parents, especially the newbies, should commit to meeting with each other as a group. Mentor new homeschooling families and share experiences, both good and bad. To make it a little more fun, meet for coffee in a parking lot, on a socially distanced walk, or rotate meeting in someone’s backyard.
We should prepare to finish the school year as we have started. For some, homeschooling is a temporary option. For others, it’s a permanent way of life. Either way, it doesn’t have to mean social isolation. It can open up a whole new world of personal awareness and family fun!
Copyright 2020 Dr. Kim Porter
Kimberly Porter, Ed.D. is an educator with nearly two decades of experience in the classroom as a teacher and administrator. She is currently designing a literature curriculum which will be available to homeschooling/co-op families on various homeschool websites.