This page is dedicated to providing parents with resources, ideas and inspiration for keeping kids engaged, entertained and learning while school is out due to the coronavirus and over the summer as well as useful links to help parents and students navigate virtual learning.
Most of this is aimed at children in preschool, since students in elementary school and above have online learning through their teachers at school, but the thoughts and inspiration can apply to everyone.
If you have additional resources, ideas or inspiration you’d like us to share with the community, please click here. All links will be vetted.
One main takeaway, though, is that every family is different and has different needs. Local mom Jane Hray, who has a master’s degree in early childhood education, shared these resources with The Sumter Item.
Not everything has to be planned out all the time. Simply being around each other and spending quality time is educational and valuable. Hray shared this link she was sent from a friend as an alternate to her in-home “school” set-up. Totally different approach, which is good too, she said. No one way is perfect for everyone.
SUMTER SCHOOL DISTRICT RESOURCES
Sumter School District's reopening plan
The Parent's Guide to Google Classroom
Guardian's Guide to Chromebooks
Parent Resources for Virtual Learning
WEBSITES FOR HOME-BASED ACTIVITIES
Watch celebrities read books. www.storylineonline.net
GoNoodle® engages 14 million kids every month with movement and mindfulness videos created by child development experts. Available for free. https://www.gonoodle.com/
Activities from one mom with a goal to make it to naptime. www.busytoddler.com
Getting children to play on their own. Fun preschool at home. www.dayswithgrey.com
Sumter School District is sharing different schools’ activities and resoruces. https://www.facebook.com/SumterSCSchools/
A Google Drive with resources for all school-age levels. bit.ly/SCDEresources
Facebook Group: Online Activities for the Quarantined
Home Science Tools offers for-purchase science experiment tools
Experience Astronomy offers for-purchase astromony lessons and classes
Guest Hollow offers science in the kitchen classes, printables and loads of free resources from a homeschooling family
Read Aloud Revival is run by a homeschooling mother who promotes reading aloud and has a website, podcast and Instagram.
A Gentle Feast, a Charlotte Mason Inspired homeschool curriculum
Professor Carol, online, self-paced history and arts for middle and high schoolers. Some content is free, some requires a subscription.
Teaching Textbooks, a subscription-based math curriculum.
Veritas Press, online Christian curriculum with free resources.
WEBSITE WITH FREE SUBSCRIPTIONS
Khan Academy offers free online classes for all ages in math, science, coding, grammar, AP classes, SAT prep, art and history.
Prepared Parents has developed resources to help families make the most of time at home. These tips and tools help parents creative positive routines and build lifelong skills and habits like self-direction, resilience, and reflection--augmenting curriculum-based educational materials.
Clemson's 4-H@Home program offers free daily educational activities via email that can be completed using common household materials with lessons for elementary, middle and high school students. Hosted by S.C. 4-H Midlands Region, the program is open to students 5-18 regardless of location or 4-H membership status. Topics will include Animals and Agriculture, Healthy Lifestyles, Civic Engagement and Leadership, Natural Resources, and Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/4-h-home-registration-100006161120
Epic! is the Leading Digital Library for Kids 12 & Under. https://www.getepic.com/
Starfall Education Foundation is a publicly supported nonprofit organization that offers free and low-cost experiences where children learn through exploration. Teaching through positive reinforcement to ensure children become confident, intrinsically motivated, and successful. www.starfall.com
Free gamification of education. Play and learn for preschool through middle school. www.abcya.com
Day-by-day projects to keep kids reading, thinking and growing. For ages preschool through ninth grade, plus resources for families and teachers. www.scholastic.com/learnathome
A team of educators and lifelong learners who wake up everyday thinking about igniting students’ passion for learning and solving the challenges teachers face in making it happen. Seesaw helps educators engage all learners, transform family engagement, and save time. https://web.seesaw.me/
From The National Wildlife Federation, uniting all Americans to ensure wildlife thrive in a rapidly changing world. Free because of the coronavirus through June. https://rangerrick.org
INSTAGRAM ACCOUNTS WITH IDEAS
FACEBOOK LIVE OR IGTV READ ALOUDS
Riverbanks Zoo and Garden
Pete the Cat: @petethecatofficial
Josh Gad (Actor who plays Olaf in Frozen): Live reads on Twitter Live @joshgad
@sumterscschools (Instagram IGTV) or Facebook
Trevor Ivey (Educator in Sumter): Live reads and interactive activities on Facebook
DAILY IDEAS: What can we DO now????
9 a.m. – Read
10 a.m. – Play outside
11 a.m. – Lunch
Noon – Have a dance party!
7:30 p.m. – Flashlights make anything fun!
Live readings are special because of the "Power of reading together at that moment in time" (Stephanie Seay)
There are lessons at home in the day-to-day of cooking, folding laundry, doing taxes, talk about them with your child and have them join you when you can!
Magna Gerber would say to "Do less, observe more, enjoy most," and to "really pay attention." – We can use this time to listen and learn with and through our children.
Parents don't need masters' degrees in teaching, and hopefully they can be reassured that someone with a master’s in early childhood is ALSO going, "This is different and hard. What do I do now?"
There are lots of resources out there, but don't forget that sometimes it's nice to just enjoy each other (don't stress, family time is more powerful than we think).
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