Life is a little crazy at the moment and it is looking like school closures are imminent. Whilst I am fully on board with this, our health will always come first, I am a little nervous about how I will manage to educate and entertain three children ages 9,6 and 3.
During the holidays and weekends we love nothing more than lazy mornings and no routine. However, these are not the holidays. We have no idea how long the schools might be shut for. My children need to be active and learning. The first task for my girls will to plan a daily timetable for us. This will include outside garden play, reading, craft time, chores, learning time (with the stuff that school will send home for them), independent play, screen time, family film etc. There is so much we can do which will become more apparent when you set some structure.
All three children love crafts. Whilst I don’t want to spend too much money I found some really good deals on Baker Ross clearance section. I have also started saving cardboard boxes, bottles and toilet roll holders. Basically anything that my children can get creative with.
Whilst I am not the best at baking my children love it. I have bought some cheap chocolate (30p! a block) from Aldi and some rice crispies. I have got ready made cake mixtures and some icing sugar so we can decorate biscuits. They wont look amazing but I am sure they will taste great. I also plan to make this Easter bark recipe which is yummy and super easy to make.
I also plan to cook with my girls. This is something that I rarely do because we always rushing and time is generally limited. Nice healthy soup filled with fresh vegetables is first on the agenda. Cooking is such an important skill so I am hoping that they will enjoy it and learn a little.
After a long cold winter our garden is looking a little worse for wear. I am going to get these kids working!! We have also been collecting the Little Garden Seedling kits that are currently running in Marks and Spencer so we plan to use these. If you haven’t got seeds you can use fruit seeds or plant cuttings. You can make daisy chains or make bubbles. Just being outside will break up the day and do so much good.
There are so many free online resources. My girls love Times Table Rock Stars and Sum Dog. There are phonics play resources which you may need a password for so ask your children’s teachers because they use these in schools. Twinkl are currently supplying free materials to support parents. Mu girls love to use Pic Collage to create presentations. There is so much out there.
Share the Load
Whilst my husband will have to work he plans to try and work some hours in the evenings. Therefore he can ease the pressure on me a little. I have also spoken to Meme who is 9 and stressed that she will need to help me. Playing with her Sisters sometimes when she doesn’t feel like, listening to Harriet read when I am trying to entertain Alfie. We are a team and we all need to play a part.
Bedtimes go out the window a little in our house during the school holidays. However if I allow the girls to sleep late in the mornings then I know I will struggle to get them to bed at a reasonable hour in the evenings. For my own well being I need some child free time. So I need all children in bed at a good time so I can unwind before I need to sleep. This is an important one. Make sure you are looking after yourself.
All that said every family works differently. School closures will effect people in different ways. I need the structure. Some people will prefer to go with the flow. Other people will need to have the television on all day just so they can get some work done. There is no judgement. Everyone needs to do what is best for them.
I know that the next few months will be full of anxiety. We will no doubt argue, cry and drive each other mad. There might be no end date in sight and it will be tough for everyone. However all we can do is try to embrace it and make the most of it. Good luck and stay healthy.