Homeschooling a Child in India
Whenever I share Nemit’s home learning adventures on social media, I get a lot of DMs from my friends & followers. Some of them share their own experience & some appreciate my way of homeschooling & ask me how I do it. I’ve promised them a detailed post on that. So, today I’ll be sharing some tips from my experience on how to homeschool your child in India.
The concept of homeschooling is not that common in India. Most parents have not even heard this term before. But when the country went under lockdown, and some schools announced online classes, parents were forced to adapt to homeschooling.
You may also read- Tips to Prepare your Child for Preschool!
I had never imagined my son sitting in front of a laptop and taking lessons. Well, he is just 4! Now, it’s been 4 months since I started homeschooling Nemit, which includes live online classes, creative activities, fun learning games, revision & recapitulation. But despite all the hurdles, I am happy that at least the learning has not stopped for my child.
Homeschooling a kindergartner (3-6 years old) is a herculean task!
The tips I am sharing below are based on my experience and worked well for us. I hope you’ll find these helpful too.
6 Tips on How to Homeschool your child in India
1- Talk with your child about homeschooling and online classes
> Having an honest and open conversation with your children is extremely important to make them comfortable about this whole new thing.
> Communication is the key, but choosing the right tone and energy while talking is crucial too. You want them to be excited & not depressed.
> Do your research before starting the conversation. Be ready to answer their questions & clear their doubts in the easiest way possible.
2- Next practical tip on how to homeschool your child in India is Set up a routine and follow it diligently
> This may sound difficult, but it is the best thing you will do for your child & for yourself.
> It took us around a week to get used to a new routine, but sticking to it helped us get into a habit real quick. We follow a pretty simple routine for Nemit on weekdays.
> And, we keep the weekends free of study, we do fun activities and play games but strictly no books.
You may also read – Fun activities to do with Family!
Here’s Nemit making a mug cake on his own –
> We saw a considerable change in Nemit’s behavior once we started following a routine. All that struggle made us understand the importance of developing a routine for a healthy homeschool environment.
You may also read – Understanding the emotional needs of a child!
3- Choose a place for homeschooling your child very carefully
> Look for a room or a part of the house where your child feels most comfortable.
Usually, attending class in a study room would sound relevant. But it didn’t work in our case. However, when we shifted Nemit’s study table in the living room, he instantly adjusted to the new setting. Hence, we converted a part of our living area into a homeschool classroom.
> Make your child sit on a table. If you don’t have a study table, use the dining table or a laptop table when sitting on a couch. But, strictly no classes from the bed, please.
> Another point to note, make sure there are no distractions during the class – no T.V., no music, no chatting, no eating, etc. in the same room.
4. Give your child the freedom to choose how they want to learn
> Young children have a short attention span of 15-20 mins. So, when you give freedom to your children, they feel involved & responsible.
> This freedom to learn things in their way also helps kids to concentrate and pay attention during the class.
You may also read – Tips to make young kids pay attention during online class!
> This is an advantage of homeschooling that you can mold the learning strategies based on your child’s interest and personality.
When the teacher takes a break, or she’s doing a one on one with other kids, I always encourage Nemit to decide what he wants to do. I give him a choice if he wants to do an activity, rhyme, writing, or sketching based on the same topic.
I believe play-based learning encourages kids to be active learners.
5- Be patient and be mindful of your child’s emotional needs
> There may be instances when you would feel lost, tired & angry and may feel like losing control. Please understand that your children may also be going through similar emotions, but they may not be able to express their feelings.
> Please be mindful of your actions. Take a break & let the other parent take control of the situation.
> Homeschooling needs a lot of effort and patience on the part of parents. But not every parent is an expert at creating & maintaining a learning environment at home. If you have not taken care of the points as mentioned above then there’s a higher chance of you feeling stressed out during this process.
> Make sure you take care of other aspects of homeschooling to keep yourself stress-free.
Please, parents, you have to stay calm and patient with your kids when homeschooling them. You have to understand the emotional needs of your child and work around that.
6- Try to bridge the gap between the teacher and the child
Now, when I say bridge the gap, I don’t mean that you start answering questions on behalf of your child. No! Please don’t do this. It’s ok if your child is not responding, let the teacher take care of it. But please don’t interrupt.
> Rather, you can work with your child later, practice and revise the topics covered during the class. Revise daily!
> Take pictures when your child is doing writing work. Ask them questions and make a video while they answer. Send that to the teacher; she will appreciate your efforts in making learning easier.
> Keep the communication channels open with the teacher. Discuss your doubts with her; you may also share your suggestions to make the learning process easier for kids.
> Teachers might also be going through various difficulties in conducting online classes. Please appreciate their efforts, give them constructive feedback for further improvement.
Bonus Tip on how to homeschool your child in India
Make sure your child is not hungry while attending class from home.
Hunger can make children very cranky. So, if you don’t want to deal with temper tantrums during the class, ensure that your child eats breakfast. Nemit gets a break of 15 mins in between the sessions, so I give him some fruits or a glass of PediaSure to keep his energy levels up.
How are the online classes going at your end? Are you enjoying homeschooling your child? Is your child enjoying online learning? Please share your experience with us in the comments below.
I hope you found the tips helpful, do share this post with other parents.
Wonderful tips Neha. Yes homeschooling is not a joke. It’s new for kids, parents, and teachers. If we try to make the process smooth then it is beneficial for all three. Routine is the first thing that we should do for making the whole experience a favorable one.
I agree with you, Alpana. Having a routine makes the process easier and it works wonderfully for everyone.
Like it or not but home schooling is what parents are being forced to do, thanks to the Pandemic. Your tips, especially choose the right place very carefully, will help making home schooling a pleasant experience.
Home schooling young kids is challenging but with setting up a routine, having a designated area for studies and supporting the child in every way are some ways to adapt to this new normal!
I think this new homeschooling demands lots of patience and the right kind of attitude to convince the kid that now this is going on in the same way and we have to set up a new routine. Your tips are very practical.
Homeschooling has been quite a challenge with my 5yo who has her moods and temperaments. Keeping a schedule is tough but the best way to go about it. Play games for a break are crucial too.
You have shared workable and practical tips. For me home schooling or online schooling for both the kids together is very exhausting. Hope they go back to old norms soon.
We are homeschooling my toddler as it did not make sense paying full fees to the school and doing all the teaching ourselves. Gave the teachers also one student less to concentrate on. Hope I’m doing well though we aren’t following any particular routine.
Homeschooling is new for all of us, it will sure take time for all of us to adapt but yes, with kids now we parents are accepting this …I liked the tips you shared to make it more helpful
these are great tips Neha. i agree home schooling is not as easy as seems and as a parent we need to keep good level of patience. especially with smaller kids, it is more tedious as they have shorter span of attention. I am glad that Nemit is doing really well with this challenging concept.
Thanks for sharing this post, as it’s really helpful for everyone now. I think most of us were not prepared for this home schooling challenge and yes now we are facing it with big smile and endless efforts .
Home schooling definitely needs lot of patience and time. You have shared great ways and I believe that routine is very important part to focus on.
Agree that online classes can be strenuous for kids as they have to sit for long hours. Pediasure is a good option to provide essential nutrients that support proper growth, immunity and brain development.
I am so glad you wrote this post! The lockdown has left us all struggling with homeschooling, and many can’t seem to get it right. This post is so useful! Thanks!
All the tips you have shared are so on point. I follow my kid’s lead and donot pressurize. Though not in school, kids are still learning a lot at home just by observing, basic activities and chores
Very relevant points. Suitable actually for kids of all age groups when we don’t have a choice other than home schooling
This is really helpful for all parents, kids nowadays have to attend a home school which is equally difficult for us parents and kids alike, understanding them and constantly talking with them to improve makes so much sense, great post Neha
Yes in fact these are really practical tips which are quite relevant to the current situation where kids have online classes. How ever I beg to differ a bit with you as homeschooling as a concept is different from kids taking online classes. Nevertheless I make him sit on study table and I did have a practical one to one with my son.
Online classes are definitely taking toll on kids health and pediasure is absolutely the thing to give all the necessary nutrients to them.Thanks for sharing it is a very helpful post.
Homeschooling is one of the trickiest things to do these days kids studying at home is the toughest drill for a parent they have their mood swings and petty reasons for not concentrating as they do in school but with these tips and ideas one can achieve few hours of homeschooling easily everyday
This is so well listed. I am homeschooling my son along with his virtual classes now. We do lots of activities and reading. That he is in Sr. KG helps and he quite enjoys homeschooling.
These are some good pointers that every parent should follow for homeschooling. I am sharing it with my bhabhi for my nephew now
Online classes and homeschooling in the new avatar is a new challenge that each of us is having to face and finding ways to create a good routine. Nutrition is definitely an important aspect to make sure the kids are at 100%
I used to cringe at the thought of having to homeschool but it’s the new normal.
Parents definitely need to manage their own stress levels and make online learning fun and relaxing for the little ones.