Make back-to-school nice and easy, even during a pandemic

Make back-to-school nice and easy, even during a pandemic

It’s that time again -even though 2020 certainly hasn’t been predictable. For seasoned homeschoolers, it’s time to wrestle your children back inside for another school year. If this is all new to you, no worries, Be Alright has some suggestions to transition from summer to fall.

No, that doesn’t mean they spend all of September swimming. What it can mean, however, is taking a fun summer hobby, movie, experience, vacation, or even the pandemic and using it to tackle the year’s requirements.

High School

Is there a movie they watched this summer and loved? For instance, 2018’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” was a hit among teens. And, surprisingly, this movie had some links to an unusual lesson.

Freddy Mercury was a huge fan of opera. He even sang with famed Spanish soprano Monsterrat Cabelle’ and considered it one of the highlights of his life.

Homeschooling music and the arts can be a chore for the unmusically inclined. The King’s College of London and the Royal Opera House have created a free online course covering the basics of opera. The course is offered based upon interest. Check out the other courses available at

Even if the concept of studying Queen for school doesn’t get them interested, dig into whatever their interests currently are for links to something worth learning.

For kids with an artistic leaning, check out Kirsty Partridge’s online classes via Patreon. For a $5 per month subscription, members have access to the artist’s many tutorials in sketching, watercolour, and more.

Middle School

Examine what your middle schooler loves about summer, even if it’s sitting on the couch playing video games or watching movies.

Maybe fishing is a summertime hobby your kids picked up? Many families relied on camping as a summer vacation during the pandemic. Transform this love into a biology lesson about freshwater ecosystems. Learning the different freshwater fish counts as biology.

Look at National Geographic’s short, but potent lesson on “Aquatic Ecosystems.”

Or, maybe your pre-teenager loves video games like “The Legend of Zelda.”

Apple offers free online coding courses for every age. Middle school and elementary students will love the free download, “Swift Playground.” Check it out and give homeschoolers an edge on the tech world.

What makes your state memorable? Use landmarks and geography to your advantage.

Every state has a history. The Carolina coast used to be Blackbeard’s stomping grounds. The Seminole Tribe of Florida makes a great history lesson related to any Florida resident.

Plus, the history of Disney World and Disney Land still count as valuable history for the United States.

If you live in a state with a coastline, steer your students to lessons about the world’s oceans. The Ohio State University has great lesson plans available, for free, covering material for preschool through grade 5 offering enough material to cover an entire semester. In fact, they even go so far as to incorporate the use of metaphors and other literary devices in books about the ocean.

Summer doesn’t have to end with a bang

Bring a little summer into your fall curriculum. And, keep in mind, there isn’t an adult alive who jumps back into work mode happily after a long vacation. This is especially true during our strange events.

Allow homeschoolers a transition period. For a week or two, build your pace slowly. Offering them some choices in the day’s schedule, what subjects to study first, and where to study, gives kids the illusion they have a little more control over their lives.

And, there’s no harm in building consistent outside breaks while the weather is still warm. Even better, take lessons outdoors.

Whatever you decide, work as a team and make this school year the best ever.

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