at-home learning while at-home working.
We used to be called Jilly Cross and Ross Musgrove. Then we were Mummy and Daddy. Now we’re just ‘The Joker’ and ‘Batman.’ Stripped of our identities as a side effect of our children spending every waking hour with us.
Having lots of time with them is genuinely marvellous. Running a business from home while undertaking at-home learning and entertainment duties has been…a challenge.
Poopie pyjama legs before design stand-up, Alexa shark noises for lunch, and end-of-the-world melt-downs in earshot of client meetings are all part of the working day now. We know we’re lucky there’s two of us to manage it, and we’re hugely grateful that we’re all healthy, but we still think it’s OK to say “this is a bit shit” sometimes. And if the kids were allowed to say “shit”, I think we’d all agree that they have the right to say it too.
digital for the win.
Luckily, remote-working software aside, the digital world has come through for us once again. There are some fantastic free online at-home learning tools for children, including full lessons for homeschooling and WE ARE INTO IT. We’ve included some of our favourites for you below, with hyperlinks included for all services.
Yeah, Joe isn’t new to anyone, but we’ve been doing The Body Coach classes for about seven years, and we’ve never had as much love for him as we do now. Anyone willing to dress up in a padded Spiderman suit to do squats is worth a mention, and he genuinely cares about childrens health. If the recent PE classes are a bit too advanced for your kids, you’ll find something suitable in his library on YouTube which is accessible from most devices (we know computer access can be limited).
If you’ve heard of Simple Politics already, it’s probably due to their Instagram page which has grown to 476,000 followers since 2015. Run by Tatton Spiller and Diane Daniels, Simple Politics makes politics accessible to everyone by simplifying election jargon, policy details and government announcements. “We exist to help you have better conversations about the issues and the changes that matter. We do so by being clear, accurate and impartial.”
And the best bit? They’ve started politics lessons for the little’uns! Aimed at seven to eleven-year-olds, you can join the half-hour class live every Thursday at 9 am or catch up later in the day via their YouTube channel.
Music For Youth aims to provide life-changing opportunities to young people between four and twenty-one years old. They usually curate and host concerts at venues like The Royal Albert Hall, providing a platform for upcoming young artists and school groups to perform to tens of thousands of people. We don’t need to tell you why that’s changed in the last year. Still, they’ve managed to adapt and provide online inspiration in the form of a two-day online event, The Future Is Now, consisting of workshops, mentoring, music videos and live performances. The first event took place in December 2020, but the video wall from young talent is still accessible and some of the workshops are on their YouTube channel. And it looks like they have new free workshops coming up here.
For further music support, check out Music Teacher Magazine’s incredible LIVE page for teachers and parents, packed full of at-home music learning resources.
There are a whopping ten weeks worth of ‘Bitesize Daily‘ learning sessions per age group on the BBC iPlayer, with each week containing between 5 and 10 twenty-minute classes. They have something for all ages up to fourteen years old, and cover subjects ranging from English, Maths and Science to Art, Design and Computing.
Nerd alert! Just kidding, coding is cool AF and it makes up a large part of our web-building biz. We also think it’s an ace thing for kids to get into early. There are quite a few free options out there including non-profit Code.Org, Code Academy‘s basic subscription, and that little-known company Google’s free contribution ‘Code with Google‘ and their Computer Science curriculum. There’s also some brilliant advice and resources on coding here from Coda Kid.
If they (you) need a bit of chill time after all this, then there are plenty of children’s yoga and meditation classes on the tube, with our favourite being Cosmic Kids Yoga. With adventures, storytelling, colourful backgrounds and cute animations, it’ll keep even the most distracted of littles enthralled.
tell us yours
This list merely scratches the surface of what’s available to help alleviate the stress of home-schooling, but it’s a start. We’d love to hear from you about your go-to resources, particularly if they’re smaller businesses and companies that need some love!
Good luck and stay safe out there pals. Hopefully, we can all grab a sunny pint somewhere soon.