Tips to Encourage Learning and Growing at Home

At HOMER, our goal is to help you raise lifelong learners. As things change day by day, we are being challenged to continuously find ways to adapt and keep our families’ lives running. Here are our tips on how you and your family can make the best of this time at home and encourage learning and growing.

Make time to play

When things in the world seem so serious, play is more important than ever — it can help turn those hours and hours spent indoors into fun memories.

If you are feeling anxious, remember that play has many benefits for the entire family. Empower your child to get creative and use their imaginations by suggesting that they: 

  • find new and different ways to play with the toys and games they already have
  • set up a family game time — and make it even bigger by using video calls to include loved ones who can’t be with you in person
  • pick the books you’ll read together and dedicate time for a family reading hour

Keep learning

As things are changing daily, we know that having access to accurate information in a time like this is important. 

Grown-ups: Finding a source that you trust to give you up-to-date news on the coronavirus can give you reassurance that you are making the right decisions for your family. We here at HOMER have been following the CDC and WHO to stay informed.

Kids: Kids might not be directly engaging with the news, but they are likely picking up tidbits of information, absorbing that anxiety, and creating a story. Having a big conversation may give more weight to the issue, but you can help reduce any anxiety or worry by:

  • observing what they are absorbing and understanding
  • helping them take control with ways to stay safe, like washing their hands 

Experiment with your routine

As we experience disruptions to our daily routines, follow these simple tips to stay flexible and make the most of whatever situation comes your way.

Grown-ups: Our families are all unique, so we recommend experimenting with different routines to keep your home life as “normal” as possible. For example, if you have two parents who are working from home, work in shifts so someone can always be with the kids.

Kids: Offering your child age-appropriate responsibilities can help them understand the positive impact they can have on your household’s environment. You can:

  • encourage them to collect their toys when they are done playing and bring them to you for a quick clean
  • put them in charge of picking the movie the family will watch or the conversation topic at meals
  • give them ownership of their learning time — whether it’s playing HOMER or another educational activity you’ve set up — give them the opportunity to make a choice

How HOMER can help

In times like this, healthy screen time is important. HOMER is here to help, and your membership gives you access to fun and educational content. Here are a few tips that may come in handy.

The Practice Menu in HOMER Reading: This part of our app gives your child the freedom to choose what learning activities they do on their own. As your child’s routines are being changed in a way they might not understand, giving them an outlet where they can make their own choices about what they play can be powerful and exciting. 

HOMER Stories: Your HOMER membership comes with free access to HOMER Stories*, a curated library full of interactive stories and songs. This app is designed so kids can easily find content around their unique interests, and it has read-to-me and read-it-myself settings so it can be used no matter what level your child is at. 

Make Your Own Stories: Understanding how your kids are feeling can help you reassure them in a time like this. Our Make Your Own Stories activities in the Create section of the Practice Menu encourage kids to tell stories using fun stickers and backgrounds. Sit with your child as they make their own story and use this as an opportunity to observe any anxiety or worry they may be expressing.

As you and your family learn how to navigate this situation, please don’t hesitate to reach out to HOMER for support or ideas. We are here to listen and help in any way that we can.

 

*Only available on iOS