Thank you Google

BLOG: Working vs Homeschooling – The juggle is real

For those who have been navigating the homeschooling journey these past 12 months, there’s no doubt it has been a bit challenging to say the least!

From broken routines to a new appreciation for teachers – everyone can relate. Gravesend delivery office manager, Nicola Smith, opens up about her family’s journey.

'Well I can confidently say, that I, amongst virtually all the other parents across the country, were screaming to themselves words we never thought we would ever say: ‘Thank heavens for half term!’

Fortunately, as a key worker, my children have been attending school for the most part.

But the one day a week of homeschooling has been more than enough, thank you very much! Since when have I been qualified to know what a fronted adverbial or conjunction is? I don’t recall learning this at primary school. How I could manage without Google is a whole other matter.

‘Mum, do I use the column method for this question?’ My initial reply is to check what other methods there are! By this point, my blood is beginning to boil with frustration! So, I simply replied, ‘Do what you think is right.’ Now I really hate myself for being so dismissive, especially when it’s my child’s education at stake. But what can you do when you can’t even relate to the terminology being used? It’s no different to talking to a friend about your working day and saying, ‘Oh, we didn’t clear the IPS this morning.’

This week’s science topic is ‘Tsunami’s.’ This wasn’t too bad as it involved watching a video clip that had been uploaded to Google Classrooms. But then comes the activity…using alliterations and impactful words to describe a tsunami in a newspaper report. This involves a plan, a catchy headline, a sub headline and fact-based information to develop a report. I felt within my comfort zone, so my blood pressure fell below 200 for the first time this morning!  

The break for lunch always restores a sense of calm in the house, assisted by the sugary treat for me in the form of a large slice of coffee and walnut cake. This always helps to get me through the final lesson of the day.

Luckily for me, my eldest child started secondary school this year. His school has been doing a ‘normal’ school day via live-lessons with their teacher. This has been an absolute God-send, I even emailed the school thanking them for setting up the provision! How mad is that!

I don’t consider myself at the back of the queue for when grey matter was being handed out, but homeschooling has really tested my every emotion. I’m sure that I’m not alone, and I genuinely feel admiration for the parents who have been doing home-from-school five days a week, sometimes with more than one child!

Finally, it is 2.15pm and we are done, and I am done in! Is it too early to crack-open the gin?’

5 Mar 2021