I think this has been on all our minds. What is our school doing this fall? Are we hybrid or remote learning? Either mode does not bode well, but especially for high school students who will need to learn at the non-COVID19 normal pace if they are going to take Advanced Placement tests in the future.
Alison Kenney tagged me on Twitter:
Any parents of high schoolers out there panicking about remote +/or hybrid learning this year? Looking for tips for helping my teen, who has become nocturnal, have a successful jr year. Big lack of detail from school so far. Alison Kenney @akenn
I’ve been thinking about this for a few weeks, trying to come up with a plan to make sure that my son learns this year.
This was my response to Alison with additional ideas, commentary, and links:
My son is nocturnal as well and he will be a sophomore in high school which will be remote. I’m thinking of DuoLingo app for Spanish (extra practice), learn to trade stocks, learn to cook dinner (he makes breakfast items and bakes), art, read 1 book/month (graphic novels, comic books, news articles totally count!).
I have a Pinterest Board of Art with Kids with art projects that are more “art class” than “arts and crafts.”
There are also lots of Art Competitions for Kids and Teens with specific instructions on what kind of art to submit. Think of it as an art prompt! Bonus points for actually entering. And winning or placing in any of these art competitions is also nice for the resume!
There are also RISD Teen classes that are online for 2D, 3D, Digital Design, and Art School Preparation (i.e. portfolio development).
My son really likes STEM so trying to find a way to make that fun and meaningful at home, particularly in chemistry. He does love Mark Rober so maybe doing some kind of STEM project that Mark does (but not so hard) would be awesome.
I love how this project solves a real-life problem: how to create a bird feeder that is squirrel-proof! It requires creativity, design, and engineering. It would be a fun project to build at home!
MIT THINK: THINK is a science, research, and innovation competition for high school students. Selected finalists have weekly mentorship meetings with THINK team members for technical guidance, helpful resources, and updates on the project’s progress and are given up to $1,000 in funding for their project.
I also researched MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses): EDx.
Learn how to generate ideas at the interface between chemistry and biology.
Learn how to teach coding skills to your students by using Minecraft, one of the most popular games of all time.
Learn how to get started with app development and create your very first iOS app.
I need to figure out more math and chemistry. I want him to read Dr. Harry Gray from Cal Tech — Chemical Bonds: An Introduction to Atomic and Molecular Structure. This book changed my life. My post on this here.
I need to find some apps for science maybe…? I found 10 apps for Science from The Edvocate.
He’s going to box for exercise and train with the boxing fighters at his boxing gym, Nonantum Boxing Club. If Nordic Ski season is on, he will do that too in the winter. This covers P.E.!
I wonder if I can get him to play guitar again??!
My son is taking Driver’s Ed the week before his remote-learning school starts. My husband is planning on taking him driving to get the 60+ hours of driving experience that he needs to actually learn how to drive. One goal for this school year is for him to get his driver’s license and learn to drive defensively.
My husband also wants my son to take more ownership of his own administrative needs such as making his own orthodontist appointments. We had glitches this summer keeping track of his appointments and we finally had him call to confirm in advance after pulling him out of summer day camp early for an appointment that didn’t materialize. We are also going to have our son be in charge of communicating with his Driver’s Education school. Learning how to self-advocate is a great life skill!
So my general philosophy is to have my son work on other skills since I can’t replicate the curriculum at his high school that well. But life skills like personal finance/stock investing, laundry, cooking. And encourage things he likes to do like art, boxing. And make him read more books.
He plans to read:
I plan to strew these books about his room:
How about you? How are you feeling about back to school? Please share your ideas of supplementing your kids’ education this year! Thanks so much for your ideas!
p.s. Related posts:
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BEST #OWNVOICES CHILDREN’S BOOKS: My Favorite Diversity Books for Kids Ages 1-12 is a book that I created to highlight books written by authors who share the same marginalized identity as the characters in their books.