With the Coronavius pandemic not going away any time soon, many families will kick off the 2020 school year at home whether that be homeschooling or distance learning. Today I’m sharing Everything Your Kids Need To Homeschool In 2020.
But before we get started, If you will be doing school from home this year and would like your morning to run seamlessly, I have a special gift for you.
I created a Morning School Routine Guide to help keep you and your kids stay on track this school year.
You can use it for homeschooling or distance learning.
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To give you a bit of a back story, I was homeschooled my entire life.
I grew up in a small town in Illinois (like 500 people small) and my mom homeschooled myself and my 5 siblings.
The older I get, the more I see the benefits of being homeschooled, however growing up I wouldn’t say it was my biggest dream.
Back then there weren’t nearly as many resources and since I lived in a small area there weren’t a ton of opportunities.
I swore that I would never homeschool. Like, detested the idea of it.
When my husband separated from the military, we settled in an area that had tons of opportunities for growing families.
We found a great private school for my daughter and excitedly enrolled her for kindergarten.
Then coronavirus happened, and we were forced to distance learn from March-May which gave me a good glimpse of what homeschooling would be like.
Our distance learning experience made me realize two things….
- Homeschooling wouldn’t be terrible and there were parts of it that I enjoyed
- If I were going to homeschool, I did not want to do distant learn.
The way I see it, distance learning combines the worst parts of both in person school and homeschooling.
Because you have to keep the school schedule with video calls and projects, but you still have to do the homeschool side of teaching and childcare.
The most attractive thing about homeschooling to me is the freedom aspect of getting to pick your own schedule and explore different topics that interest you and the kids.
You don’t get that with distancing learning.
When we finished school in May, I thought for sure they would be going back when the school year rolled around.
But as the weekly progressed, that hope became less and less realistic.
So we decided that homeschool would be a much better fit for our family this semester.
We plan on reevaluating in December on how to move forward.
Everything Your Kids Need To Homeschool In 2020
Note: This post may contain affiliate links. Meaning that at no cost to you, I may make a small commission on anything you purchase through my link. But don’t worry, I never promote products that I don’t believe in or truly love <3
A Homeschool Curriculum
You will need to get a curriculum that works for your family. There are so many options that it can almost be overwhelming.
The absolute best part of homeschooling is having the freedom to choose to teach your kids in a way that works best for you.
Ask around in different Facebook groups, and read about different curriculums before you purchase.
Coming from someone who homeschooled my whole life, I would advise that you choose one curriculum and purchase the whole program.
I realize that this can be a little more expensive, but programs are designed to complement each other and flow together.
It also makes lesson planning much easier when you are using only one curriculum.
The other thing to keep in mind is that some curriculums offer the option to purchase one semester at a time.
I love that option because it allows you to test out the curriculum for both you and your kids without having to commit to the full year.
Do your research before you purchase and remember that this is a learning experience.
You have the freedom to change things up if they aren’t working for you.
A Daily Chore Chart
Setting up a daily chore chart is my favorite way to create incentives and allow your kids to earn an allowance.
I started using a chore chart a month before we started school to help them get used to a routine and what to expect.
They can earn money for each task as they check them off the list.
Our chore chart is custom made using icons for each task. This makes it easy to follow for the kids that can’t read yet.
Even my little three-year-old has one and loves checking things off the list.
The custom chore chart includes…..
- A blank spot for you to write your child’s name
- Morning routine
- Helping mom (house chores)
- Thinking of others
- Evening routine
These are all the things they have to do each day to check the box and earn their allowance.
I try to gauge their allowance to earn 5 dollars a week.
At the end of the week, our whole family goes to five below and they each get to spend their money.
We don’t hand out physical money because it’s honestly a pain for me to keep cash on hand, so I added a “balance” box at the bottom of the chore chart so we can keep a tally.
When we get home from the store, we deduct what they spent from their balance so it gives me a chance to teach them about money, adding, and subtracting.
It has been a great way to incentivize and teach them and it’s a lot of fun.
I purchased a dry erase pocket sleeves and used command hooks to hang them on our refrigerator.
This magnetic pen holder and washable dry erase markers are great to have so my kids have everything they need to get check off their boxes.
All of the items below for your convenience:
- Dry erase pocket sleeves
- Command small wire hooks
- Magnetic marker holder
- Kids washable dry erase markers
A Shoe Update
Even if your kids are staying home, they will probably need a sneaker update. And one thing I’ve learned about kids is that they play hard.
One mistake we made for kindergarten was getting cheapy shoes from Walmart.
They were super cute and my little was excited to pick them out, but they didn’t hold up well at all.
This year, we chose a pair of shoes that are trendy, comfortable, and slightly higher quality than our last Walmart purchase.
I love the slip-on vans because they are comfortable (after breaking them in) but they also seem to go with all her outfits.
They slip on which is awesome for all moms but are still supportive enough for them to ride bikes and scooters.
Since they do have a bit of a higher price tag, I use the DSW buyback program to earn credit.
You can turn in one pair of any used shoes each week and earn a $5 credit.
There is a DSW on my shopping route so I’ve made the habit of turning in one pair each week.
When the season changes, I always have a balance waiting for me to put toward shoes for the kids.
It’s one of my favorite programs.
We chose the black and white checkered vans for my little guy and the colorful pair for my girls.
Water Resistant Backpack
Even though we will be doing school from home, I still went ahead and ordered backpacks for my kids.
Since we are homeschooling and can create our schedule, I intend on taking full advantage of the freedom. With that, I want to be able to pack up and do school on the go if we need to.
We will start the year keeping all of their daily textbooks in their backpacks so If we want to travel or do school at a park on a beautiful day we can.
I like water-resistant backpacks because they can really take a beating throughout the school year.
Water-resistant tend to last longer.
We got the backpacks below and my kids LOVE them!
Always keep water bottles ready to go so your kids won’t have to stop everything to get a drink.
I like to fill their water bottles with fresh water every morning and have them sitting out.
It’s just one less task and interruption.
It also makes it much easier to grab and go if you need to run out or make a last-minute park run.
We’ve gone through many different water bottles over the years and my favorite by far are the kid’s Yeti water bottles.
They are a little more expensive but as always, you get what you pay for.
And if you think of price per use, they are well worth it.
We use ours every single day and take them with us everywhere we go.
The Yeti water bottle has no gasket, is easy to clean, and doesn’t leak so you can just throw them in your bag.
I also like they are compact because the larger water bottles can be extremely cumbersome when traveling. Especially if you have three or more kids.
These custom name stickers make them fun. My kids love them!
You can get your kids Yeti water bottles and custom name stickers through the link below.
- >>>>Kids Yeti water bottle
- >>>>Custom stickers
Stainless Steel Bento Box
We use these on the go, or even to make lunch ahead of time.
They have four different compartments which help to create balanced fun meals.
These are another item that we use almost every day.
And if you want to add some fun to your day, get these premade joke note cards to slip in your kid’s lunch.
I typically use these when I drop my kids at the childcare at our gym and every time I pick them up, they tell me about the note and the joke.
It’s such a fun way to create memories.
You can get the bento box and premake joke note cards below
This is a good time to update all of your school supplies. I like to keep this simple and stick to the basics.
Here are the back to school items your kids will need. I am working on a post on how to create a supplies cart and will link soon.
- Glue stick
- Kids Scissors
- Pre-sharpened pencil
- Pencil Sharpener
- Art Smock
- Finger Paint
- Paint Brush
This is all you’ll need to get started and you can always update your supplies throughout the school year.
When it comes to homeschooling, I don’t love the idea of letting my kids staying in their pajamas all day.
There is just something about getting dressed and ready for the day that sets productivity in motion.
In that same token, I do want my kids to be in comfortable clothing so they can curl up on the couch if they want and not be bothered by stiff clothes if that makes sense.
Below are a few items I purchased for my kids:
Learning Toys For Younger Kids
One huge fear of homeschooling was how to keep younger kids busy while teaching other kids.
But it’s not as hard as you would think.
I use a ton of different “learning toys” to keep my younger kids busy while I teach my 1st grader.
Below are just a few suggestions of fun learning toys that keep kids busy:
There has never been an easier time to homeschool than now. We have so many helpful resources at our fingertips that makes the process enjoyable for both you and your kids.
It’s only a matter of figuring out what is best for both of you.
Choose a homeschool curriculum that works for your lifestyle, your kid’s learning style, and your teaching abilities.
Implement an incentive program by using a chore chart that teaches your kids exactly what they need to do to earn.
Make a shoe update to your kid’s wardrobe so they are ready for all the activities you will be able to do with them.
Use a backpack to create an “on the go system” from the beginning so it will be easy to back up and do school anywhere.
Always have water bottles and stainless steel bento boxes on hand to make lunch seamless.
Get all the supplies and tools you need to make learning easy.
Invest in a comfortable wardrobe for your kids to avoid staying in their pajamas all day.
And lastly, purchase fun educational toys to keep your younger kids busy while you teach your school-age kids
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