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What did you learn from homeschooling your children? Share with Epson – £200 voucher to be won

210 replies

JustineBMumsnet · 25/03/2021 09:26

Now that most children are back in their physical schools, you might now (finally!) have time to sit down and reflect on the whirlwind experience of home educating your children during a pandemic. Whether your experience involved convincing yourself that watching a vaguely educational documentary counts as a lesson; navigating printing a never-ending stream of worksheets and constantly running out of ink; or wondering why, as an adult, you didn’t understand most of your child’s set work, Epson would like to hear about what you’ve learned from homeschooling your children.

Here’s what Epson has to say: “After months of juggling work and home schooling, parents across the country are breathing a collective sigh of relief. A recent study has shown that 60% of parents preferred teaching their kids using paper rather than a screen. However, printing can come with its frustrations, whether it’s running out of ink at a crucial moment to expensive cartridge costs.

Epson’s flexible ink subscription model, ReadyPrint, means you can print as much as you like without ever running out of ink while saving up to 70% on ink costs…no more last-minute panic when there’s a piece of homework due tomorrow!

Printing shouldn’t be a burden for parents. ReadyPrint helps save you money and gives you peace of mind with ink delivered straight to your door before you run out, making printing as easy as A, B, C.”

Have you learned that Year 5 Maths is a lot harder than you remember it being? Maybe you’ve become aware of just how much your children rely on screens - both in and outside of the classroom - and want to find more ways for your children to use printed resources? Have you noticed an increase in the cost of those learning materials? Maybe you picked up some tips you’d like to share with parents homeschooling (whether short or long-term) in the future? Perhaps running out of ink, paper, or other learning materials at the most inconvenient of times made you realise just how helpful flexible subscription services could be?

All who share what they learned from homeschooling their children on the thread below will be entered into a prize draw where one MNer will win a £200 voucher for the store of their choice (from a list).

Thanks, and good luck with the prize draw!


Insight Terms and Conditions apply

What did you learn from homeschooling your children? Share with Epson – £200 voucher to be won
OP posts:
KeyboardWorriers · 03/04/2021 08:35

That I don't have to do it all myself and try and work as well. The best decision I made was to get help

  • a fabulous local tutor twice a week for each child
  • Outschool for following their passions and social fun (and an excellent UK based English teacher )
  • thinkersmeetup for term long classes for my 10 year old son who loves maths and science
KeyboardWorriers · 03/04/2021 08:36

Oh and that they need plenty of exercise and fresh air to be able to work, so despite both having very busy jobs we made sure we found time for that somehow! (Part of the reason for outsourcing some of the education)

trackerc · 03/04/2021 09:04

Homeschool education happened for both children and grown ups. The experience taught me that learning happens everywhere & you just need to recognise it. There are standard curriculums to abide by but there is also the learning all around that. Each individual child has a preferred approach to learning and to tap into that and see it in action while at home was a revelation to them and me.
We learnt important lessons on being resilient- when things felt frustrating, when tech didn't work, when time was against us, when we had to muddle through, when all we wanted was social interaction outside of our household to reward us for the homeschooling effort we put in. We also learnt to be compassionate to others and recognise that not everyone has the same opportunities as us. The physical return return to school was a blessing, but I'm grateful for what homeschooling taught each of us too.

starlight36 · 03/04/2021 12:37

I saw first hand the emphasis on grammar but discovered both my children happily picked it up. The Oak National Academy lessons used with structured input from teachers worked really well.
My children both need regular breaks and to get fresh air and plenty of exercise to be able to concentrate. They also benefit from being able to see their peers and know they are sharing the same experience. Our brief registration Zooms (10 minutes a day) really helped to do this and I'm sorry grateful the school were able to provide these in the second long lockdown.

starlight36 · 03/04/2021 12:41

really grateful - not sorry!

MySocalledLoaf · 03/04/2021 13:11

That a child’s world needs to be bigger than its nuclear family.

LalalalalalaLand123 · 03/04/2021 16:23

I learned that it's possible to age 20 years in only a few months.

AnneofScreamFables · 03/04/2021 20:57

I learned that attidue plays a HUGE part in whether my child turns out a good piece of work or a bad one. And that I find it quite difficult to influence this or to turn a negative attitude into a positive one.

Ivyhedera · 03/04/2021 23:00

I learned that the curriculum is outdated. Why are children not being taught teamwork, presentation, leadership skills...why is there nothing about why and how to save money, how mortgages work etc etc.
Re printing we did most things on an iPad as printing and then taking photos to send back was more hassle however it is easier to use pen and paper for a child definitely.

ladygoingGaga · 03/04/2021 23:07

I learned that it doesn’t matter when the home cooking lesson isn’t followed to the letter, and that over fussing and stopping him from working it out himself is annoying trait of mine Blush

MiddayMadDog · 04/04/2021 09:46

That it is utterly impossible to homeschool young children whilst working full time. I learnt that a child like mine who needed an Ed Psych assessment due to lack of progress was completely unsuited to bee taught by a full time working parent, with undifferentiated work form him and with his teacher not giving me the support I needed to understand his educational difficulties or how to help him with. I learnt that his school prioritised the children who were already doing ok and the kids like him who were struggling were thrown under a bus. I learnt that plenty of other schools better supported their struggling children in lockdown.

MiddayMadDog · 04/04/2021 09:47


That a child’s world needs to be bigger than its nuclear family.

This is so perceptive.
BananaDaiquiri · 04/04/2021 10:02

I learnt that we need a better printer! Ours is always eating the paper or not taking it up.
I learnt that I think the online lockdown learning will probably stand my y6 in good stead for secondary school and more independent learning (though I wish it hadn't gone on for so long).
I didn't manage to get my kids into looking at the their teacher's feedback - once they had submitted a piece of work, mentally they were done with it and forgot all about it. If we go to any online learning again I need to spend more time checking feedback and making sure that they remember to do this too.

wishywashywoowoo70 · 04/04/2021 12:32

I learned that teaching is hard work and it's simply not possible to do when working FT
Children need a classroom environment with the support of teachers and TAs abs they need their peers around them
The guilt and stress that home schooling brought was one of the worst times I've had since having a child

79lauren79 · 04/04/2021 19:00

I learnt how much my daughter loves and needs schchool and how differently she behaves for her teacher than me. When the wall comes up and she refuses to do anything for me, a word from her teacher and she changes her mind

BlackeyedSusan · 05/04/2021 12:40

Destructive waves and constructive waves, whilst idling in the constructive variety on holiday. Autistic DC was taught subjects by stealth. I learned the stuff, then taught DC.

Cupidity · 05/04/2021 20:23

I learnt so much about my children. We always knew dd (11) is fiercely independent and we had so many battles with me nagging her to do the work. Eventually I gave up, printed her a weeks worth of home learning set by the school and told her it must be completed by the end of the week. We learnt she's actually amazing at self motivation, all her work was completed to a better standard, she powered through the worksheets and completed it all early, without any arguments. She's starting secondary next year and it's eased a lot of my worries about the jump in homework expectations.

I learnt that ds is far more capable than we (and his teachers) gave him credit for. He learns incredibly well 1-1 but gets distracted easily in big groups (like in a classroom setting).

TheDeckchairGardener · 05/04/2021 21:27

I learned that teaching is hard and involves a lot of patience, especially when you have a young baby at home too! I only covered the basic English with my 5 year old DS and only managed an hour a day before his attention completely vanished. My DH did the Maths lesson after he finished work. Despite how hard it was, I noticed a big improvement in his handwriting which was satisfying.

salemaxo · 05/04/2021 21:37

I found that tutoring and teaching are similar yet so different. At least with tutoring the kids are going over past content. Teaching is so hard. I really respect those that do it and enjoy it.

alshareif · 05/04/2021 22:00

I actually found it enjoyable, not going to lie lol. Especially the Maths. I always hated learning English so not surprising I didn't enjoy teaching it.

MParke · 05/04/2021 22:12

I learned that variety is key for successful learning. I vaguely remember myself at that age but only after home schooling did I remember how much my attention used to drift.

beebeabee · 06/04/2021 00:11

That schools exists for a reason!

jackstini · 06/04/2021 07:33

Get as much done in the morning as possible. Anything after lunch needs 4 x the effort!

Sometimes you have to just walk away and stand outside for 30 seconds

Positive feedback is so important

Everyone else's child is not doing 100% of the work brilliantly either!

zindeggeh · 06/04/2021 16:07

I learned that my kids are actually really smart.

Patafi · 06/04/2021 16:15

I learned that zoom is the modern version of a meeting. Everything is done over technology, why not meetings? Haha.

I also learned I enjoy teaching Maths!

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