All of us are used to school holidays and these vacations were always prepared in advance, for our children to enjoy. However, just as our children started to get well acquainted in their school routine, an unpredictable pandemic situation of COVID-19 virus crop up globally which resulted in us being lockdown at home with our family.
For us parents, we are happy to spend time with our children and make the most of the situation - as the majority of us are working parents. We were not yet aware of the struggles and efforts we will be facing during this period. Soon, we would become parents and teachers, taking care of the household and the daily education of our children. How could we manage all this on our own, knowing that we also have to work from home?
Support and Solidarity :
When the first revision booklet - prepared in a very short lapse of time by The Fenix School - popped in our email box, we were all very optimistic that we would manage our children. But we did not know what kind of challenge it would be! After the first day, we all came with the same conclusion: we were exhausted, it has not been easy to get our children focus as they were in their comfy homely environment and were distracted by almost everything. Although most of us are not new to helping our children in their studies, it is also true that our help was not well structured and was taken very lightly...until now.
Thanks to the detailed home learning program and well-organised lesson plans prepared by The Fenix School and the strong solidarity amongst us parents we are now able (after two weeks of continuous work) to keep our children interested and motivated in their studies and a clear progression from our children has been noticed by all parents.
Us being taught in a very traditional way, the system put in place by The Fenix School is very innovative and unique. Thanks to the positive encouragement and help from Mrs Moothoo and her team but also the priceless support and ideas of each one of us, we managed to help our children do the work efficiently and achieve the results in a creative way.
Improvisation is our moto. Depending on the motivation and mood of our children, we improvise with whatever material we have at home and it is now clear that we are really enjoying preparing the work given to us by The Fenix School. Some of us draw, create flashcards, use lots of colours to make the lessons look more appealing, while others bake or draw with chalk on the floor.
This creativity and improvisation have definitely a positive impact on our children because they see how involved we are: without being harsh, they feel more secure and motivated to learn better and deliver beautiful outcomes, that are very far from traditional boring homeworks we are used to. For instance, they created a model of their classroom at The Fenix School with recycled material and they really enjoyed that!
Finally, at the end of their first week, Mrs Moothoo has even made a video collage of all their beautiful homeworks and left them a positive message. Hearing her voice made such a positive impact on our children that they kept on smiling and felt even happier to continue doing their work and do their best.
New homeschooling routine :
After the first hectic week, our children have finally found a new routine in their daily activities. We are also learning new strategies each day and making sure that there is a balance between learning and play time. But there are good and bad days too. Sometimes the lessons go smoothly and the opposite is true as well. They are 5-6 year old kids after all and they are in a situation never experienced before. They are used to playing with friends and travel to school. Thus being confined at home since two weeks for our children is exhausting and they often have emotional mood swings. Same applies to us parents. With this threatening situation and the precarious ascension of the COVID-19 virus, we often do not have the strength to work with our children but then when we see the pride they show when they succeed, it gives us the strength to look ahead.
One week, four weeks, two months?
Based on the COVID news we are getting everyday, most of us think that school might not resume until June, so we need to get ourselves prepared psychologically. We do not want our children to get detached from school and thus we urge The Fenix School to come up with a plan where our children can see each other and their teachers as often as possible. This will play a fundamental role in the social-emotional development of our children.
To finish, homeschooling has made a huge difference for our children. Far from the class environment, they have set up a different daily routine and a different approach towards learning (more autonomy). Gradually, our children are digesting the fact that classroom can also be run at home through the brain teasing activities set out by The Fenix School. So, again, we would like to congratulate The Fenix School Community which gives each of us support, courage and motivation in this journey in which day after day we are discovering that teaching was one of our hidden talents.
On this note, though we are trying our best, nothing can replace a school and we are all looking forward to their reopening.
Until then let’s follow all the measures during this crisis.