#homeschooling: 10 actual life-lessons I'm teaching my kids (that don't require a password or tablet) 4 months ago

#homeschooling: 10 actual life-lessons I'm teaching my kids (that don't require a password or tablet)

Is your head spinning too with all the Zoom classes and SeeSaw passwords and Reading Egg codes and Mathletics questions?

So. Much. Same.

In fact, so much so that I have decided that from here on out, school homework is going to be on my terms – and not anyone else's. What we have time and energy and patience for, we will do. The rest we won't. Why? Because I have a job I also have to keep doing. And there are only so many hours in our day. And I prefer to have my children run and play and spend time outdoors soaking up the sun and vitamin D rather than being hunched over a screen all day.

Also – and this one is a big one for me: I am taking these slow days as an opportunity to teach life lessons. You know, the things that actually are of importance for children to know, but that we seldom have time or energy for during our normal busy lives.

Because here's the thing: The maths and Irish? The teachers, who are actually really good at what they do, will catch the kids up on whatever they missed once school returns. But these life-lessons, they are mine to teach my children – and I reckon right now is as good a time as any.

Bonus? Teaching your kids some of these might actually benefit you too, mum – well, more so that making sure they have read everything on Folens online, anyway!

1. Clean

Their rooms, the car, the sink when they have spat toothpaste all over it – it is ALL good, important learning. And if you don't teach them how to clean, then who the heck will?

2. Master the coffee machine

Seriously; one of the most brilliant things that happened this lockdown was my children learning how to use the Nespresso machine. Not only so they can treat their mummy to a lovely oat milk latte, but also so they can steam the milk for their own hot chocolates when needs be. A win-win, if you aks me.

3. Bake a cake

Kids love to bake, and everyone should know how to make at least a couple of different cake recipes. Start them off with something simple like a brownie, and voila; you got your very own baker on your hands soon.

4. Gift wrapping

We have not only made several homemade birthday cards during this lockdown, but we have also practised our gift wrapping – which will no doubt come in handy in the future, when our lives once again are filled with parties of the non-Zoom variety.

5. Boil an egg

Another life skill everyone should be taught and that will serve them well in the future.

6. Pair socks

I swear, my life just improved dramatically the day my eldest child had learnt how to pair up socks – and I could delegate this job to her for eternity (with pay, of course!)

7. Empty the dishwasher

Again one of those tasks you will wonder how come you never took the time to teach them before.

8. Write shopping lists

I now only call out what we need, and my 10-year-old writes all our shopping lists – complete with rainbow and unicorn doodles, of course.

9. How to use tools

I love a bit of DIY, and so recently, as we were renovating our Ikea play kitchen (I had pinned images for ages and finally got around to do it), I took the opportunity to also teach my children how to hammer in a nail, how to paint and how to tell one type of screwdriver from another one.

10. Make pancakes

We are very serious about our Sunday morning pancakes in our house, and recently, I have started including my kids in both the making of the batter and the flipping of the pancakes – a really important skill for the rest-of-their lives, I think.

Bonus? In not long, I'll be able to get them to make these pancakes from scratch themselves, meaning I can get served breakfast in bed!