Home school experts offer advice on how to handle virtual learning

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- As students start virtual learning, home school experts offered advice on how best to learn from your house.

A break from a desk may not be a bad thing. You don't need anything fancy.

Just clear off your kitchen table and lay out some paper, pens and pencils.

Avoid distractions like phones or the fridge. Experts also suggest speaking encouraging words to yourself like "You can do this!"

With schools closing down during the COVID-19 outbreak, this has quickly become most parent's reality.

On Friday, Texas City parents picked up school supplies to start teaching their students at home.

"It's been very different," parent Angela Hughes said. "It's been very strenuous, actually."

But, home school experts say it doesn't have to be. At the Home School Store in northwest Harris County, they've been helping kids learn at home for years.

With the deadly coronavirus outbreak, they're seeing new faces.

"One thing that really helps is just the structural routine," the Homeschool Store consultant Karen Khan explained. "Every day we try to have breakfast at this time, get dressed and get our chores done. Then be ready to start reading or start a little hand writing every day."

Another piece of advice is, learning doesn't have to be all day. If you still have to work, don't worry. Home school experts explained lesson plans don't have to last long.

"If you could start every day for about ten to 15 minutes a day, and then build from there," Khan said. "That'll be a great start."

Right now, some districts are finalizing what virtual learning will look like. It still could be a few days or weeks before it begins.

If you're unsure, contact your district or check their website.

Home school experts say you don't have to wait for it to begin. Read with your child, have them copy your writing and do simple math problems using toys like Legos.

If you want some free material, Khan recommends handwritingworksheets.com and worksheetworks.com.

"Definitely, you can do this," Khan said. "You've raised your kid. You taught them to brush their teeth. They've learned to walk and all that kind of stuff. It's kind of the same thing. Just a little consistency every day."

A sense of normalcy experts say your kids will crave in a situation that's anything but normal.

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