Saturday, 20 June 2015

Keeping a child engaged when they can't attend school

This is my experience with my 10yr, I went through a similar situation when my nearly 20yr was 16 and did things very differently, for her we switched to home schooling through Brisbane School Of Distance Education but my son did not want to leave school and his knee will heal so I felt it was important to keep him in his school and keep him engaged and as up to date with school work as possible.
I signed him up with Startlight Foundation's Livewire program so he can talk to other kids, got work from his teacher, and moved my study supplies out from the office to one end of the dining table so I can study while he is doing schoolwork, and a few craft supplies at the other end though I did very little crafting while keeping him engaged.
This may not work for everyone but I thought it may help someone when their child is stuck home due to injury or illness.
Here are pics of the set up of our dining table while this has been going on.  He has been off school for 7 weeks now.

How everything is stacked so the table can still be used by Mr 10, Mr 8 and one other when eating.
It is a mess but it is what we have needed for these 7 weeks, usually all of this has a home somewhere else.
The rainbow loom supplies are for hand therapy.
In the future I will use Magazine holders along the back of the table for everything.
How I lay out what Mr 10 is doing, ready for him (his hand splint is covering his name).
I only have 3 chairs at the table despite it being a 6 seater, one each end and one along the side he sits, the empty space where he sits is to accommodate his wheelchair he is temporarily using.
The stack of Mr 10's school work including sketching supplies for art time, 2 math books, grammar and a folder full of print outs his teacher emails me for him to do.
He has also done some card making during art time.

His schedule, I took what information I had about how things run at school and created this. 
I have also put each item into the calendar app on the Ipad so a alarm goes off to alert him and others who may be in the room when I am not when it is time to move onto the next activity. 
During free time he is allowed to do anything he would do at school during free time that he is currently able to do.  This is about him feeling he is still having a fairly normal day, as normal as it can be given the circumstances.

He is very excited to go back to school.
I would love to hear from teachers for any ideas on ways I can keep him engaged.
Also other parents who have had a child unable to attend school for a long time but could utilise distance education.

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