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.