I have three children and they are all educated in very different ways.
My eldest daughter Scarlett has, up until lockdown, been attending a local college where she has been studying for her A Levels. Since college closed she has been advised that she will not be required to participate in any more work and that she will not be required to sit exams in the summer. The Government website for the Department of Education has provided guidelines for how they will provide pupils with their grades and this will be through assessment of work throughout the course from her teachers and then the teachers will be asked to grade the pupils in ranking according to how likely they were to have been to obtain that grade https://www.gov.uk/government/news/further-details-on-exams-and-grades-announced all pretty scary stuff. I think she would have preferred to have sat the exams and at least felt that she still held some control over the situation. Whilst she is not required to complete any extra work she has decided to immerse herself in one last project that the teacher has set as an optional. I have read it and it is pretty impressive.
She is impressive, she has worked hard from the very start of her A levels, and has recently been accepted to study law at all five of her university choices, these included three Russell Groups https://russellgroup.ac.uk/. She isn’t studious, it does not come easy for her, but she puts her head down and gets stuck in. I am very proud of her.
Bonnie has been home educated for the last four years. Now as some of you will have currently been introduced to the world of home schooling I do have to point out that it is not the same. Normally we can go and visit art galleries or museums or at least pop to the local art shop to browse the colours whilst Bonnie decides what she needs for her next master piece. We do not normally have an armful of celebrities offering free access to websites, we do not normally have my husband around as much to provide a break for me, we do not normally have Joe Wicks jumping up and down encouraging us all to get the day started. The point is that it is a lot tougher for us both than you would think.
The flip side is that Bonnie does have more company at the moment; on the whole this has been a good thing. Her sisters have more time for her and it is great to hear them all giggling over something that they have seen on the internet, probably at someone else’s expense.
Whilst on a trip to Cornwall last summer she discovered a book at the cottage that we were staying at and has finally managed to get my husband to contact the owner and obtain the title of the book. The book has arrived and she has started it, she is awesome this book is far too complex for me https://www.amazon.co.uk/Parallel-Worlds-Science-Alternative-Universes/dp/0141014636 .
That leaves me with my youngest Lizzie. She attends a private school, and her days are very long and very structured. They include a lot of physical exercise and a great deal of enthusiasm is required. Her days since lockdown are still very structured and still very long. I marvel each day at how she gets up logs on and keeps going and going and going, her resilience and positive attitude inspire me.
Technology has been amazing in providing her with online lessons in which she can interact with her teacher and classmates, it’s not the same but it definitely has kept her learning on track and ensured that she has not fallen behind. It has also given me a chance to see how amazing she is at certain subjects that she says she “hates”, I now see that it is a lack of confidence and not an issue with understanding the subject. One thing that I am sure of is that this is not the same as home schooling, this is home learning, it is very different.
In conclusion it would seem that they are all coping very well indeed to their different learning situations, but before I go I have to say something. Whilst the learning is going well I am really upset for them. I am upset that Lizzie turned double digits this week and could not have a birthday party, I am upset that Bonnie cannot get her ‘teacher’ back one to one and I am upset that Scarlett will not be able to feel those mix of emotions as she walks down the corridor and out the doors of college for one last time.