Mo Willems is the acclaimed author of the Pidgeon and Pig & Elephant series in addition to a number of children’s books like Knuffle Bunny. In his books, he has a way of reaching out to children, teaching them, and entertaining them.
Right now, at the moment we all need him most, he is helping out patents and children alike.
While are children are home with schools closed down due to COVID19, Willems is hosting a 22 minute “Lunch Doodles.”
In the Lunch Doodles, Willems shares his creative process while encouraging it in children. There were drawings at the beginning and the end, and he takes time to answer questions.
He even encourages kids to send questions and share their drawings with him. Overall, it’s inspiring a creative and learning environment, and he’s doing it just as the time we need it.
They’re available at 1:00 P.M. EST, and they will remain on YouTube to accessed later if needed. The first episode is embedded above, and if you return here, subsequent episodes will be linked to this article.
Like many parents across America, we have been faced with the prospect of having to work from home while also homeschooling our children at the same time. Even with the teachers handling online learning it can be difficult, though many of us can learn more about effective studying here. Still, it’s been difficult adjusting, especially as many of us do not have proper home office setups or spaces suitable for our kids to sit and learn. Fortunately, there are a few things we can do to remedy that.
In regards to setting up an office or learning space, a spare room or storage room is the best. If the space is tight then you may want a desk to fit in a corner and allow more room that way. If you have no spare room then it’s important to separate work from home in a way. For example, if a lot of people are going in and out of the kitchen then that is not a good place to set up your office space or your child’s learning space.
Once you have the space set up, your next obstacle is time. Your boss may have already outlined a schedule for you but with a child, it can become difficult. If your district is like my school district, there are strict log-in times to count your child’s attendance. If that is the case, you are stuck teaching your children during work hours instead of being able to be truly flexible.
To put things into perspective, my children’s home school district sent the following requirements that our child be logged into Google Classroom anytime 7:00 – 10:00 A.M. to count attendance. From there, the school day is assigned as 9:00 – 2:00 with teachers getting an hour break from 12:00 – 1:00.
During that time, we are supposed to do assignments with our children while also finding a half-hour during the day for physical activity. While that may not seem daunting, in our household, we have to do that while finding time for both parents to work while also keeping watch over our two-year-old.
With that in mind, we have developed a schedule which we hope helps other people in the same situation as us:
6:30 – 8:30: Parent A works from laptop while Parent B get kids dressed and has breakfast with them.
8:30 – 9:00: Clean-up of breakfast, set-up for homeschool log-in, and switch of parents for work.
9:00 – 12:00: Parent A is out of pocket monitoring emails and calls working with the homeschooling. Parent B is on the laptop working.
12:00 – 1:00: Lunch time for family. Both parents are out of pocket monitoring emails and phone calls.
1:00 – 2:00: Parent A goes back to laptop while Parent B is out of pocket finishing up the school day.
2:00 – 4:00: Both parents working from home simultaneously while children are doing activities like coloring, reading books, playing outside, or watching T.V.
4:00 – 4:30: Regroup. Discuss who still needs to do what, have a light snack for kids, and figure out any contingencies for the rest of the day.
4:30 – 5:30: Parent A sits with kids and begins preparing dinner while Parent B is on the laptop
5:30 – 6:30: Dinner
6:30 – 7:30: Every device off for family time. Part of time spent is a family walk, play a game, etc.
7:30 – 8:30: Bedtime process, i.e. baths, reading books, and tucking the kids into bed
8:30 – 10:30: Both parents on the laptops doing work finishing up whatever they need to do for the day.
Parent A: worked 7 hours
Parent B: worked 8 hours
From 10:30 on, you can find time to spend with your significant others, and catch up on whatever you need to catch up on from the day.
Please keep in mind, this is a framework of a schedule for two parents working at home with kids who have homeschool or online learning classes to attend. As a family, you may need to adapt to your jobs demands as well as any challenges which may come our way while we are all home due to COVID19.
As time progresses, this may be amended to reflect any changes we need to make. If there is anything you are doing which is different than this, and you find it helpful, please share in the comments section. Overall, remember that even though we are all socially isolated, we are still all in this together, and we can all work together to try to figure it out.