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How to incorporate fun, stimulating and chilled activities for your child

How to incorporate fun, stimulating and chilled activities for your child with or without Special Needs at home !




It is March 25th 2020. We are now officially in lock-down. JB is no longer attending school and I have to quickly develop a home-school schedule for him.


Just to note, all our children are different and this is what I do with JB, which is designed to incorporate his particular interests and specific needs. Each child would need their day personally tailored to benefit them, and so anything that is useful here, is great, yet think of your child’s talents and ways to motivate them based on what they enjoy.

Secondly, to quote Heather Anne, ‘Homeschooling is not the same as Crisis Schooling… being home all day is not our normal! …they (the children) have lost their in-person time with friends, their daily routine and the predictability of life that gives us security.’ So in a nutshell, do what you can, create harmony, fun and whatever you feel is right for your child. That is good enough.


Routine

I have found that at least initially, a structured routine is established and I decided that one as nearest to that of his usual school day is best.

Although I wouldn’t have this kind of structured routine if I were homeschooling JB in an ideal world (that’s the world where JB would allow his mother to actually initiate lessons), I have implemented a subject structured routine similar to the one he is used to at school. This involves English and maths activities in the morning with sensory breaks and snack time.


After lunch he is free to choose his own play, with some encouragement to participate in music, role-play, painting and dancing. I personally do not believe in testing as part of teaching, so this is never used, and instead I concentrate on input with his natural urge to respond as output. Fortunately, his sisters support this routine with a half hour each slot in the morning.


To recap:

  • Morning walk

  • English

  • sensory break

  • snack

  • Maths

  • sensory break

  • prepare lunch

  • Lunch

  • outdoor physical activities

  • Arts and sensory activities

  • relax


Areas to be addressed:

  • Language, reading and speech

  • numbers and shape

  • life-skills

  • physical skills and exercise

  • music

  • sensory integration

  • arts

  • independence

  • science


The First Few Days

This has started sporadically as it has taken some time for JB to understand this situation of lock-down that we are in. On the whole though, I have been impressed with his acceptance of his new home-school life, but I am prepared for changes as we negotiate our way through each day, fixing glitches along the way.


Wednesday was his first day at home and this was a relaxed day with lots of explanations and doing all the things he loves. Thursday and Friday went well, establishing the morning routine and helping prepare his own lunch. There were no major meltdowns.


JB on Monday was not keen on going for his morning walk. We have been walking in the morning just as he would normally walk into school, and I find this gives him enough sensory grounding to enable a settled start for his English activity. So, although he didn’t want to go out, (or do maths or A.R.R.O.W.), JB happily participated in his English activity and for the remainder of the morning joined in with yoga, played some of his musical instruments and engaged in role-play with a touch of window cleaning! Being the first Monday, I was not entirely surprised at this as the weekend threw all home-school routine out of wack. The afternoon was spent relaxing to his favourite music (Disney songs and some classical pieces).


I will continue to elaborate on the daily activities and include more detail on what benefits each activity provides.


blowing bubbles is great for speech as well as visual tracking


Yoga with big sis !

JB playing his cello !

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