#Lifeathome with #children during #SelfQuarantine: #parenting and #schooling while the #Coronavirus is in #Wisconsin (Day 1)

Schoooooooool’s out, for, summer….schoooool’s out for-ever…..

Well, not quite. To stem the spread of COVID-19, many states are shutting down schools for the next three weeks. That leaves me with Blondie, Biff, and Bash every day while Bo goes to work (until they close that). I’ll need to teach online. They’ll need to do homework online. Everything will have to be done at home, period. No zoos, no museums, no libraries. Just us and our computers so long as the Internet holds. Maybe a park, too, if the day’s nice, which ain’t lookin’ too good this week.

In a word:

As a Wisconsinite who studied in Minnesota, I have no problem utilizing this phrase.

At least we managed to get a visit in at the library on Saturday before they closed today. Blondie’s got some novels on wolves, Bash gathered books on building robots with Legos, and Biff stuffed his arms with as many truck books as possible.

Don’t forget all my comic books downstairs, Bo texts me. We’ll make this work.

Not gonna lie–it’s hard to feel that all that positive right now. I’m sitting on my bed, staring out the window like I so often did during those bloody months of post-partum depression. All those people out there, the birds, the flowers. All right out there, yet another world away from what I feel in the moment. Sitting in this spot again, knowing I can’t take the kids anywhere…damn, but I can feel that depression lurking beneath my bed like a monster out of Calvin and Hobbes.

We’ll make this work.

Okay. We’ll make this work.

I know you’re out there, fellow parents, wondering how the hell you’re going to make this work, but you will because you must. We all must.

It won’t gel right away. I’ve already written today off with its lousy trips to the grocery store and dentist (“Where’s the pizza? We can’t make muffins without eggs! I want a toy EVERY DAY! I’m going to race through all the dentist chairs and spin them like crazy!”). But we can’t write off the next three weeks. Tomorrow morning I’m going to get the kids up a little while after their normal wake-up time, and at breakfast, we’re going to make a plan for reading time, creating time, play time, cleaning time, screen time, the lot. Schedules are vital for sanity around here, especially with twins who suffer from Sensory Processing Disorder. Biff especially thrives on the order he expects in his classroom, and now EVERYthing is in disarray. Bash doesn’t necessarily fear failure right now, but how will he react to online school work? And Blondie bummed because as of right now, her piano recital, her choir stuff, her play dates…all cancelled.

And then there’s me, who was so determined to finish her short fiction and share it this week, continue her Star Wars analysis.

We’ll make this work.

That starts with chucking the pessimism.

Let’em have their bears powered by fart rockets today with commercial breaks featuring poop pizzas. Tomorrow, we build the plan for a new normal. Tomorrow, we will make this better.

And tomorrow, I’ll share that plan with you.

Read on, share on, and write on, my friends!

50 thoughts on “#Lifeathome with #children during #SelfQuarantine: #parenting and #schooling while the #Coronavirus is in #Wisconsin (Day 1)

  1. Just realised we were supposed to be seeing The Who this week. Not sure they will agree to play in my bedroom while I sit on the bed. Social distancing might be tricky. Maybe in my dreams. It’s going to change many of us. I guess the secret is that we try to make the change a good one. Your a great parent, you will make it work somehow. That gives me hope, you can do this, then I can do this. As this goes on it will be interesting to compare notes. I promise I won’t copy. Take care. xx

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  2. The pen is mightier than the gun, yet no match for plague. Simple mathematics reveals the capacity of this irksome virus to run amok. False news, according to my able quack in his surgery last week…I attended for a reasons unrelated to the ‘corona man’…the small talk of this virus being nothing more than ‘average flu’ as this wee beast favours Mr Lungs desire to consummate his marriage to Ms Respiratory Tract. Do take care, young Ms Lee and all your tribe. I’ve come to the conclusion that the horizon is where our capable eyes should focus upon, and not the clouds of bewildered days. Best wishes, The Old Fool

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    • To the horizon, indeed. There are towns in the Midwest where the mayors are ready to declare their own sort of martial law, and states are considering curfews. Uncertain times…thank heaven my kids have imaginations to rise above all this…

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  3. I’m rooting for you, Jean, and all of us! Right now we are looking at 6 weeks off, but I learned the theory of video teaching and google classroom today. Doesnt seem too bad…
    Out of routine is hard for kids and parents, but we take deep breaths and hunt for blessings in the crazy! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    • Blessings in the crazy is right! And yes, you’ve already been off for a while. I’m only just now entering this fray. You’re a model for us all!!! I’m going to be utilizing a lot of those video tours, drawing tutorials, and other things to help break up our time together. So long as we don’t bury ourselves in Lego, we might just make it. xxxxxxx

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  4. A tough call Jean and I am a self-isolationist by design. I do feel for everyone with children who are full of energy and are finding it hard to not socialise. You sound like you have a great plan..author Pat Furstenberg found this which might be useful..https://finance.yahoo.com/news/stuck-home-12-famous-museums-185921806.html 12 museums that you can take virtual tours.. not sure if any are children friendly but possibly one or two… take care and stay safe. hugs Sally

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  5. Will be thinking of you, sending you strength.
    Uff-Da, spoken with a long out-breath, like a sigh from the deep, sounds appropriate.
    Your clan will be challenged to invent and settle into new routines.
    And maybe this is the time to revisit fairy tales.

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  6. Wow, this is just so nuts! Seems like everywhere’s going into lock-down. We’re not there yet. People here are panic buying and self-isolating even though nobody’s been reported sick in our area. Our stores are enveloped by a miasma of sanitizer.
    But I too wonder if this all this shut down is strictly necessary, although I do understand the need to avoid overwhelming the health services (such as they are, depending where you are). Time will tell.
    I count myself lucky to only have to cope with a husband who’s being sent home from school at the end of the week until after Easter, having three kids at home… eish!!
    But you will be brilliant, because you are! Stay well, stay safe, stay sane!
    Sending virtual hugs, ‘cos that’s all we can do anyway. C xx
    PS looking forward to reading some super stories from your clan, by the way. 🙂

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  7. Urg… What a challenge, with no outside amusements where you can take them… I used to sit down and plan a timetable every major holiday with the children anyway. Because once they are used to the routine at school when they know what is happening throughout the day, they prefer it that way and even before I was a teacher, I liked to plan out my own day that way (I still do…). It isn’t written in stone, but it stops that heartbreak wail – ‘I’m borrrred – I don’t know what to do!’ I think it’s a great idea to do that for the coming weeks.

    Can I also suggest that you can add in some party games which are great fun? Play-dohionary – where you hand around little cards with the names of things – HOUSE, RING, WINDOW, DOG, etc and the team then has to make what is written on the card, while the other team try to guess what it is… We used to play it in pairs. Challenges to see if you can all line up and pass an apple under your chin from one to the other in a chain in less than 30 seconds… There are a bunch of them online, which maybe might also help? Making joke books – which was something we did as a project one summer holiday with the children… As yours are already creative and happy to sit and draw and write, that can also be fun. Best of luck and I’ll be thinking of you…

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    • JOKE BOOKS! Love that idea, especially as they enjoy reading jokes to one another. I’ll add that to my project list! And games, too, those challenges are a great idea. I knew I wanted to break up the day with physical activity, academic activity, and downtime, and ideas like these will make a big difference, especially when I can’t take them outside due to weather.

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      • That’s what I thought. And there is so much English to be taught/learnt through the telling of jokes with puns and misdirections, etc… You can get them to sew up the little booklets after getting them to write out their favourites and illustrating them:)). It was always a favourite when I was teaching.

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  8. Pingback: #Lifeathome with #children during #SelfQuarantine: #creating a #Homeschool #Routine | Jean Lee's World

  9. Uff-da is right! (Wow, I haven’t heard that in so long…) Hang in there, Jean, I know it’s going to be a rough ride for a while! A lot of my friends are in the same situation, trying to balance one or two parents trying to work at home while also watching their young children. For weeks at a minimum, and probably much longer. What fresh hell is this, amirite? It makes my luxury of working at home in total isolation and peace and quiet –plus a cuddly cat– seem like introvert heaven by comparison. If only I weren’t mostly an extrovert, hmmm. Well, at least I have the internet.

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    • I know, right? The kids and I already have a low-grade cabin fever. “Can we go to __?” “Nope, it’s closed.” I actually took the boys to Walmart today just to get out of the house and give them some room to walk around because the weather’s too cold and wet for time outside. In two weeks, I can only imagine a lot more families are going to be nutso with cabin fever, and will not be able to handle this shutdown. 😦 You stay healthy, Friend! xxxxxx

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      • Ugh, that does not bode well! Hopefully they’ll adapt to the new routine and maybe calm down more. I can see how this would be a really good time for the weather to cooperate, so at least the kids could run around outside by themselves to blow off steam. We’re getting a lot of rain here, but at least it’s warm enough between showers for some play time (from what I can hear outside my window, that is). Hang in there, my friend!

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