Family Ministries—Adapting How We Do Religious Education – April 2020

From Lily Rappaport,  Developmental Director of Family Ministries

It has been said that desperate times require desperate measures. In the effort to slow down the rapid spread of the Coronavirus, and to comply with the state government’s stay-at-home order, UUCM has had to close its doors. During this period while we observe precautionary measures for keeping everyone safe, we’ve replaced all in-person gatherings with online ones. We are adapting the way we gather for meetings, worship, children’s chapel, and religious education, and are experimenting with many ways to connect virtually using available technology and creativity.

This is all uncharted territory, and we are confident that we can provide opportunities to stay connected in nontraditional ways. We are using Zoom to hold religious education programming and to be a platform for connection and support for parents and families in this challenging time. With schools closed, many of our families are facing a double challenge of managing new ways of working from home and of helping their children keep up with their class studies. 

From an experienced homeschooler mom, here are some tips for parents to help their children in remote learning situations.  

· Your elementary age child only needs 1-2 hours of school per day.

· Middle school is 2-3 hours and high schoolers 3-4 hours.

· Please don’t expect them to spend 6-8 hours of school per day. That is not how homeschooling works.

· There are many resources available for you, use them!

· Let them sleep in, its good for their immune system.

· No need to get dressed.

· Talk to them about what they want to work on.

· Let them be part of the planning.

· Spend 1 hour reading. 

· Chore time.

· Cook something together. A lot of homeschool math is done in the kitchen.

· This is a stressful time for all of us. Don’t make it worse by stressing about school. Be gentle with your babies and yourselves. If it gets frustrating, walk away.