Home learning has become much more commonplace, as the pandemic forces families to stay at home and teach at home. Whilst some schools have online learning all sorted with Microsoft Teams, digital classrooms, recorded lectures and automated homework, not everyone has the infrastructure for resources to roll this out effectively. If you have found your children’s school behind the times and lagging in their digital delivery of work, you are not alone.
Parents across the world have needed to step up and start getting actively involved in their children’s learning, from lesson planning to fun-filled break times. As such, I wanted to share with you a selection of resources that have proved invaluable over the past few months for helping my children learn, and relax whilst in lockdown.
Having teachers in the family gave me a unique insight into lesson planning. Whilst many do plan bespoke lessons around particular learning objectives, there are sites that give you pre-made lesson plans ready to use out of the box (or printer). Twinkl.co.uk is a UK resource that offers a selection of free lesson plans for the entire primary curriculum. If you sign up for membership, the choice becomes vastly more impressive, but if you are just starting out, there are plenty to choose from. Whilst the content is great for printouts and activities, it does lack any videos.
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For more interactive and engaging content, I heartily recommend that you check out BBC Bitesize. BBC Bitesize has a plethora of topics from learning a language to ‘easy peasy politics’ and covers everything from ancient history to the latest news and events.
Oxford Owl not only has general resources but also a great selection of e-books from children aged 3-11 so whether you are reading the school classics of ‘Biff & Chip’ or literary classics like ‘The Secret Garden’ or ‘Sherlock Holmes’, the Oxford Owl has you covered.
It doesn’t all have to be books and sheets. Learning can be achieved through the medium of play. Top Marks allows children to play a host of learning games from simple counting (for 3-year-olds) to more complicated equivalent fractions (for 11-year-olds). Whether you are pairing animals or mining for maths problems, you are sure to find a game that interests your child.
It’s not all work, work, work! Why not reward the children with a selection of simple free non-learning games available over at Plays.org. From side-scrolling Princess platform games to colour-coded Zuma style games, there is a great selection of short, simple and entertaining games that can be enjoyed in a break time for free.
In summary, parents across the world have a new appreciation for teachers and the job they do. By teaching only two children during the pandemic, I shudder at the thought of teaching 30. I hope these resources are useful and I’m sure I am not alone in hoping that normality returns shortly.