Everyone is a little unsettled and unsure right now. Your child’s school may be closed or going online for a few weeks and everyone’s routine is disrupted.
Know that you’re not alone and as a community, we’ll get through it.
Specifically, Granite State Home Educators wants to help our traditional-school neighbors feel comfortable continuing their children’s education during this interval.
We’ve got you!
You do not need to declare as homeschoolers if you intend to keep your child enrolled at their current school and return once the school resumes normal operations. However, if you do intend to become full-time homeschoolers, either now or at a later time, then check out our website, particularly the FAQ and Where to Begin pages. No matter your decision, please be welcome to join our Facebook group where we have over 2,000 members who are happy to share our homeschool experiences to support you during this difficult time.
UPDATE 3/19/2020: We created a group specifically for those families whose children are displaced from their usual school due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is intended to be a supportive place where we can encourage each other and come together to support our children's learning during this uncertain time. If you are in search of temporary support during the health crisis, please take this an an invitation to join GSHE Unexpectedly Homeschooling. We also have many veteran homeschoolers who are willing to support you 1:1 if you need advice, a listening ear, or just someone to vent to about your struggles. Here is more information, if you're interested.
UPDATE 4/16/2020: Governor Sununu announced today that public schools remain closed for the rest of the school year and continue remote learning. Districts may chose when to complete the academic year and whether they will have April vacation. Some districts have already announced early closings. The Governor also encouraged districts to be flexible regarding grades, including pass/fail options.
If this is a temporary situation for your family, try to keep some sense of normalcy as it will be a big help to both you and the kids during this time of uncertainty. Establish a flexible routine about what happens when, and what they are responsible to do. Stick to normal bedtimes and activities as much as possible. It will help keep everyone on track and allow you to do the things you need to do, especially if you work remotely.
“Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood. ~ Fred Rogers
Try to use this break as an opportunity to let your child explore something of interest that is not included in their usual educational setting. What does your child like? What gets him or her excited? Does your child love dinosaurs or insects? Watch a bunch of nature shows, check out books from the library, and explore online resources. It does not matter what the subject is -- it can be anything that sparks their interest such as an art activity, computer programming, woodworking or sewing projects, nature journaling and studies, garden planning, home/life skills, or anything that they want to study. Listen to audio books, watch history or science programs, learn how things are made, try something new! Does your child want to develop a hobby but doesn’t usually have the time to pursue it? This is an opportunity for your child to explore whatever lights them up! It will capture their imagination, keep them productively occupied, and encourage independent learning.
Older children can absolutely help around the house! Laundry, meal planning and preparation, house cleaning, yard work, pet care, and more are all great experiences and life-skills.
Even young children can benefit from this alternative learning experience. Keep the littles engaged with puzzles, board games, reading time, craft projects, building materials, toys that encourage imaginary play, and age-appropriate household responsibilities.
Your local library is a treasure-trove of resources for all ages! They often provide access to e-books and other online materials, movies, and almost anything is available through Inter Library Loan.
The day doesn’t have to be all work! It’s important to give kids a chance to relax, unwind, and have quiet time. Remember, this is a stressful time for them, too.
If possible, do something fun together as a family, something you wouldn’t ordinarily have an opportunity to do. Maybe have a movie and popcorn night. Bake a cake from scratch together. Play a board game. It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you do it together.
If you’re looking for more specific suggestions and resources, our GSHE community of homeschoolers has numerous recommendations that we compiled for you. We will update this list periodically as we find more useful resources, so check back periodically for something new to explore.
Massive list of resources available free during this temporary school closure
Big History Project – examines our past, explains our present, and imagines our future
Coursea – courses, certificates, and degrees online from world-class universities and companies
CuriosityStream – thousands of documentaries, award-winning exclusives and originals
Khan Academy – free online courses, lessons and practice
Kids Discover – free online access through June 2020
LinkedIn Learning – software development, design, business, web development, and photography courses
McHarper Manor -- free art projects
Outschool – live online classes for ages 3 to 18
SkillShare – find what fascinates you
YouTube – millions of educational videos on any topic you can imagine
We also compiled interesting articles about school closures and homeschooling.
5 Tips for Learning at Home When Coronavirus Closes Schools by the Homeschool Compass
School Canceled Because of Coronavirus? A Homeschooler Offers Some Tips by Reason
Suddenly Homeschooling: A Message from a Veteran Homeschool Parent by Loving, Learning, Living, and Parenting with Light and Happiness
At GSHE, we’re here for you during your child’s school closure. Let us know how we can help by sending us an email at info@GraniteStateHomeEducators or finding us on Facebook and sending us a PM.
By Michelle Levell, co-founder
More resources added 3/18/2020
Berliner Philharmoniker – free digital concert hall
Billboard – live streams and virtual concerts
Cincinatti Zoo & Botanical Garden – daily live lessons
Comcast – free and discounted internet services
Dairy Diary – virtual farm tours
Diply – virtual tour of National Parks
DIY Photography – NASA media library publicly accessible and copyright free
Homeschool Hideout – 150+ educational shows on Netflix
How to Homeschool for Free – list of virtual field trips
Institute for Excellence in Writing – free language arts lessons
Kids Activities – list of several resources
Laughing Squid – live video streams from the Monterey Bay Aquarium
Louvre Museum – online tours
Mystery Science – free, easy science for remote learning
New England Aquarium – virtual visits
Open Culture – free online courses, audio books, ebooks, movies, coloring books, and more
Open Culture – virtual tour of Russia’s Heritage Museum
Paris Museum – thousands of works available online
PBS – Storytelling with Words and Pictures, grades 3 to 6
Romper -- Walt Disney World and Disneyland virtual rides
Scary Mommy – watch astronauts reading stories from space
Scholastic Learn at Home – free resources
Storynory – free audio stories
TDS – free internet to low-income families and college students
Teaching Textbooks – free trial
What Do We Do All Day – list of indoor activities
Home (speech, occupational, etc) therapy options and resources
Speech Buddy -- online speech therapy resources
Understood – various articles and resources
Free, Online Learning Resources When Coronavirus Closes Schools by Cato Institute
Homeschooling 101: Teaching Multiple Grades by Confessions of a Homeschooler
How to Prepare for Extended School Closings (and Not Lose Your Mind) by A Mothership Down
I Homeschool My Kids. Here Are 6 Ideas for Parents While Schools Are Closed by Kerry McDonald
So You’re Homeschooling Now! Some Resources, Tips and Tricks by EdChoice
More resources added 3/25/2020
Ancestry -- National Archives records
Audible, an Amazon company -- free stories
Body Coach -- PE with Joe
Brickapalooza – video Lego lessons
BroadwayHD -- theater performances, free 7-day trial
Josh “Olaf the snowman” Gad -- evening stories read, #GadBookClub
GoPeer – free K-12 tutoring service from Harvard, MIT, and UC Berkley students
Harptoons Publishing -- live drawing classes at 2pm EST
Macaroni Kid -- virtual field trip list by Macaroni Kid
Mensa Kids -- multiple learning resources
Metropolitan Opera -- free stream of operas performances
NASA -- STEM activities for grades K-4
National Museum of Natural History -- virtual tour
National Wildlife Federation -- Ranger Rick and other digital magazines
Oceans Initiative -- virtual marine biology camp
Rosetta Stone -- world language resources, free access for three months
Simon Brooks -- free stories
Home therapy options and resources
Apps for various learning differences by Educational Technology and Mobile Learning
Coronavirus Closed My Child’s School: Is the School Required to Make Up Missed Services? By Wrights Law
Extensive list of OT, PT and Special ed resources by A Day in Our Shoes
Resources and advice by Wrights Law
More resources added 4/13/2020
Bookery Manchester -- Good Morning Storytime daily at 9am
Color Our Collections -- free coloring pages of materials from multiple historical societies and museums
Levar Burton Reads -- stories read by Levar Burton, Mondays at 12pm for children, Wednesdays at 6pm for youth, and Fridays at 9pm for adults
Loeb School of Communications -- online classes
Montessori Kiwi -- Free resources
Northeast Georgia History Center (NEGAHC) -- free online, live presentations about history and literature
National Park Foundation -- Park Activities from Home
Sir Patrick Stewart -- Sir Patrick Steward reads Shakespearean sonnets
Tin Mountain Conservation Center -- Activities for When the Family is Stuck at Home
Walking Boston -- Free audio book of One April in Boston
Home therapy options and resources
Parade -- Temple Grandin Has Some Great Tips to Help Kids with Autism Cope During Coronavirus Quarantine
SPED Homeschool -- Free and Affordable Online Special Education Resources
SPED Homeschool -- Resources for Modified Instructional Reading Texts
You Clever Monkey -- Building Fine Motor Skills
More resources added 5/9/2020
HSLDA -- Mom Possible
NH Department of Education -- NH Learns Remotely
Plimoth Plantation -- online programs and resources including a podcast series, virtual workshops, and coloring pages
The Spaces -- 12 Frank Lloyd Wright buildings with virtual tours
Travel and Leisure -- 13 virtual train rides from around the world
Travel and Leisure -- Pixar has videos of recipes hosted by their animated characters
WMUR -- free weather courses for K-12
Yes Kids -- Learn Everywhere