In case no one has told you lately, you’re doing a great job. It may not feel that way as we work and try to teach our elementary school kids at home. In fact, it may feel like the exact opposite. But the simple fact that you’re reading this right now, that you’re concerned about doing right by your kids, means you are already doing a great job.

The next time you doubt that, here are a few things to remember:

  1. We are all in uncharted territory. 

We’re living through a period in history that is unlike anything we’ve ever experienced. There was no way to predict or plan for this unprecedented time. Be patient with your child, but don’t forget to be patient with yourself. Don’t beat yourself up when your child refuses to do their work or you struggle to help them understand a tough concept.

Instead, expect that it will be hard. Cling to patience, knowing that you will lose your grip on it sometimes, and that’s okay. Give yourself permission to mess up, and start again. What better example to set for your kids? 

  1. There is no wrong way.

Every state, county, school district, school and teacher has a different idea of the best way to approach virtual learning. We’re all learning as we go. There is no one way to navigate the challenges we’re facing. Not only that, there is no wrong way to do it.

 If something isn’t working for your family or your child, don’t be afraid to reach out to their teacher for support or ideas. Be flexible with what’s being asked of you. Be flexible with the style of learning that works best for your child. And, be flexible with your own ideas about how this should be handled, how much you and your child should be achieving, and what a successful school day looks like for an elementary school child.

  1. All your kids need is you.

The best thing you can offer your child is a sense of security. Not a flawlessly executed lesson plan. Not Pinterest-worthy craft projects. Just peace of mind and some calm within the chaos.

Our kids’ lives have been turned upside down just like ours have, and the one constant they have is home and family. Home should always be a safe haven, but now that concept is truer than ever. Chances are, your kids won’t look back a year from now and remember the school assignments they completed. They’ll remember how you made them feel safe and loved during a scary, uncertain time.

Which brings us to one last thing to keep in mind. 

  1. Right now, you have the opportunity to teach your kids lessons that aren’t in any curriculum.

You can show them how to face a scary situation with courage and optimism. How to do the right thing, even when it’s hard. How important it is for all of us to take care of each other.

You’re teaching them all of that, whether you ever complete a single school assignment. So yes, you’re doing a great job.