Free Online Resources for Teaching Your Kids at Home
As we all get used to this new normal, parents and teachers are faced with a question no one ever thought would need an answer. How do we keep our kids safe and practice social distancing while ensuring their education continues for the school year? So many parents are now juggling working from home and teaching their kids. And the reality is, those are the lucky ones because there are those who now find themselves looking for a job while trying to teach their kids. Whatever your situation, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! There are thousands of other parents in the same boat. To keep you from sinking, here are some resources we found online to help.
Your School District’s Website
First and foremost, navigate to your school district’s website and take advantage of every free resource they have. Lots of schools are loaning laptops and several internet providers are offering free service (search your local providers to see if you qualify). Teachers, bless them, are 100% willing to help you and your child find your way through online courses and understand new processes and procedures. It’s okay to raise your hand (virtually) and ask for help.
Read Aloud Extension
For those with younger children who haven’t yet mastered reading, there is an extension called Read Aloud in the Chrome platform. This will give your little ones some independence and they can follow along while the application reads the text to them. To use Read Aloud, simply navigate to the web page you want to read, then click the Read Aloud icon on the Chrome menu. In addition, the shortcut keys ALT-P, ALT-O, ALT-Comma, and ALT-Period can be used to Play/Pause, Stop, Rewind, and Forward, respectively. You can download the Read Aloud extension here.
CircleTime is a site that gives the option to have the kids fly solo or the parents follow along, which can be helpful. Some of the options include yoga, their version of storytime and sing-alongs. This is especially good for the younger ones when you need to take that conference call or send that email.
PBS For Kids
Another great free tool is PBS For Kids because it is geared towards kids under the age of eight and is packed with resources and interactive ideas. They break the categories down into Emotions & Self-Awareness, Social Skills, Character, Literacy, Math, Science and Arts.
ABC Mouse usually costs $9.95 a month, but they are offering a free trial. In their words: ‘The Step-by-Step Learning Path presents the full ABCmouse.com curriculum in a carefully designed program of more than 850 lessons in ten levels. As your child completes each lesson, he or she is guided to the next one and is motivated to continue learning by ABCmouse.com’s Tickets and Rewards System.’
Scholastic is a name we’re all familiar with, but have you heard of Scholastic Learn at Home? This content is customizable based on age (through grade nine) and packed with free resources including; articles and stories, videos and fun learning challenges. Kids can work at their own pace and with or without a parent.
Some of us take to our kid’s math lessons like a duck to water. Some of us hide in a closet. With wine. Whichever side of the pendulum you’re on, Delta Math is a great resource for parents and students. This is a free website for covering a wide range of math content from middle school through AP calculus.
And last, but most certainly not least, we don’t know who needs to hear this but: cut yourself some slack. Yes, you. Right now. We are living in unprecedented times…that will eventually end. You’re not a certified teacher and no one expects you to be one. What is it we tell these kiddos? Just do your best? So, just keep doing your best. We will be okay.
And remember, if your student is enrolled in special education services, they still have this instruction available! The team at VocoVision are experts in providing remote speech, occupational and other teletherapy services! Contact your school or the company directly for in-home services and click on the button below to learn more.