10 truths parents want teachers to know about homeschooling in lockdown

Written by Mamie M. Arndt

I miss the days when our dining room table was nothing but a barren place that held the fruit bowl and hosted the odd takeaway when we felt obliged not to eat another meal at the coffee table in front of the TV.

Our lump of pine is working hard these days – we now eat every meal together.

Every. Meal. Together. Let that sink in for a moment.

It’s also the place that has now become a combined office/school. Lockdown has changed a lot for all of us; we now own a printer, we know 90% of the Trivial Pursuit questions off by heart, I finally understand fractions.

But I also have a new appreciation for teachers with all the neverending POSITIVITY. Reading SeeSaw and Microsoft Teams threads from 10-year-old girls is sometimes even more fun than watching Emily In Paris (again) on Netflix.

Miss “Insert Teacher’s Name Here” is it Q 1 and 2 or do we have to finish part 5? Do we have to upload this on Tuesday or Thursday? Should we rule the page into two columns or three? Dolphin emoji, kissy-face emoji, heart emoji, dancing penguin.

In fairness, all the answers are more patient than passive-aggressive. Every single response starts with,”As I said in class…” You can practically hear the teacher’s eyes rolling as she too sits in front of Emily In Paris (again) wondering when will this torture finally end.

To that end, We’ve compiled a list of things that parents would love teachers to know.

  1. We are giving our kids all the answers – we can’t help ourselves. “Press mute,” we gesture to the kids lucky enough to get live Zo0m calls or similar, and from behind the laptop, we mouth the answers. “Go on, put up your hand,” we urge. And we bask in the glory of the teacher’s praise when the answer is right.
  2. If it’s wrong we blame the child; “Oh, you mustn’t have heard me right.” (stupid fractions)
  3. We are in awe of how you get our children to listen to you, without interrupting you to ask for snacks 50 times in half an hour. Seriously impressive – top of the class.
  4. Yes, I parent in pajamas 80% of the time.
  5. My husband completed the project on The Normans after two weeks of 9-year-old procrastination and a wobbly tower made of old porridge tins. He resents that you told him to ‘try a little harder next time.’ He is a qualified Chartered Surveyor.
  6. I want teachers also to know that we feel your pain – mainly during the My News time when the child either drags the computer into the other room to show everyone their dog or takes the entire 15 minutes up with “And then…and then…” stories. Try being told how Minecraft works from scratch on a Sunday morning at 7 am.
  7. My daughter was only joking when she said she had McDonald’s “three times this weekend.” Ha, imagine.
  8. We understand this is really not easy.
  9. Our kids idolise you. I hope you know that. If we are their sun and moon then you are their stars. You make a mark on them in a really special way every single day. That’s why this is so freaking hard, there is no substitute for face-to-face learning.
  10. Now we idolise you, and your patience. Thank you for everything. These are some of the hardest circumstances in which to do your job. We are listening and you are doing amazing. Thank you so much.




About the author

Mamie M. Arndt