How Do You Teach If You're Not a Teacher?

Like millions of other parents, our son is now homeschooling due to the social distancing required by the Coronavirus outbreak. Unlike millions of parents, my wife and I are both college teachers. I'm sure the last week or two must have been pretty difficult for everyone who does something besides teach for a living! Hopefully, the adage, "Those you do, do. Those who can't, teach," will finally be dispelled once and for all.


To be fair, teaching college students is a far cry from homeschooling a five year old, but still, we have at least some idea of what we're doing. We set up an awesome "Centers room" filled with writing, drawing, painting, blocks, puzzles, maps, and other materials.


We filled half the kitchen table with workbooks for writing letters, numbers, performing basic math, practicing reading, cutting shapes, and drawing. Jessica made a daily schedule to ensure that we get our schoolwork done before playing while also making sure we don't neglect recess. Mo Willems' terrific "Lunch Doodles" YouTube series has been a God-send.


But what do you do if you haven't the foggiest notion of teaching? How do you teach older children with more demanding homework, with teachers feeding them assignments and activities that don't involve the engaging play-based learning our son enjoys?


I can't help with all of the subjects your middle-school or high-school students may have, but I can definitely help with the writing part. "How to Write an Essay Like an Equation" is perfect for parents who "hate English" or "never did well in writing." For $4.99, you can get an ebook that you can have your children read while you work from home or take a break (Ha!). Or if you prefer, you can get the paperback from Amazon for $9.99.


As long as your children actually read the book and contemplate its ideas, I guarantee they will enter their classes this fall -- whether middle school, high school, or college -- better prepared to study English and writing than when COVID-19 forced them into homeschooling. If they don't, then I'm not teaching my college writing classes very well. But I know I am teaching them well, because my course evaluations at my University and on Rate My Professor consistently say that I am.


Read the Introduction and Chapter One for free so you can decide if the book will be a good addition for your child.

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