Wednesday, March 25, 2020

COVID-19 Shutdown Forced Homeschool Parent Log – Day 12

Forced Homeschool Parent Log – Day 12

Yes, we are on day twelve without school. I am counting the weekends, because weekends have no meaning when you know the kids won’t leave on Monday morning.

I’m not going to lie and say homeschooling is going well. We have already abandoned hope of any sort of educational advancement during these bleak times. We will be satisfied if the kids get out of this just not being dumber.

And please don’t get me wrong. Their teachers are doing a great job. At least, I think they are. I am basing that solely off volume of communications, not content. They are assaulting my inbox with email after email about this and that and the other thing. I would give you specifics, but I stopped reading the emails on Day 4. It was just too much. I have a life to lead over here!

We assume that our boys are reading the emails and doing the work, but it would simply be too much work for me to follow up. Instead, every once in a while, I just yell down the hall, “Did you get that email from your teacher just now?”

They say incoherent things back that I can’t and don’t want or need to understand, and I check the “homeschooled them” box for the day.

Son Number Three coughed yesterday morning. We quarantined him in the closet for the remainder of the day, not because we are worried about the coronavirus, but because he is very loud and we took the opportunity to mute him for a while. It’s our mental health that we’re concerned with, not the virus.

Meals are getting weird. In the before-time, when we had jam-packed schedules full of school and sports, we still managed to get an organized dinner on the table at least a few nights a week. Somehow, with all this amazing “free time” we’ve been given, dinner just can’t seem to bring itself together. We still have a fair amount of actual food in the pantry and refrigerator, but we keep pairing some snack mix with a can of olives around three o’clock, after the noontime cereal wears off. This pushes dinnertime out well into Cinema class (see below), which inevitably leads to popcorn for dinner, which is fine, because popcorn is a vegetable. Prove me wrong.

As part of my ever-evolving (some have called it lazy, but I can’t be bothered to argue with them) homeschool curriculum, I have added an Appreciation for the Cinematic Arts class in the evenings. This shelter-in-place seems to be the perfect opportunity to homeschool my kids about the magic of the silver screen in the eighties and nineties. Each night they enthusiastically tug at the duct tape binding their wrists and ankles as we watch another golden oldie, including, but not limited to, Groundhog Day, Adventures in Babysitting, The Great Outdoors, Fletch, Uncle Buck, Teen Wolf, Beetlejuice, Kindergarten Cop, Predator, and What About Bob.

They are loving it! Also, in order to properly scare them into staying home during this pandemic crisis, we showed them Outbreak. Highly recommended.

Even though we still have food, my wife keeps pestering me to go to the store. I don’t understand this, since I’m pretty sure I made my feelings on the subject very clear. I don’t want to go to the store. Last time I went I had to stand in line for an hour to get in, even though I wasn’t going to buy toilet paper. I don’t even like standing in line to go to things I actually want to go to. The grocery store certainly does not qualify for that list. Our corner gas station continues to sell milk, so I see no need to go back to that hellish line.

She showed me the grocery list she’s been compiling, trying to get me to believe we really needed things like green beans and broccoli, but I saw right through the lie. She’s almost out of chardonnay.

I don’t need to go to the store. I can wait her out. She’ll go. She might try to muscle though some pinot grigio for a few days, but she’ll crack.

I must sign off now and go get Weekend at Bernie’s cued up and ready for the nightly Cinema class.

Stay strong, people!

See you soon,


Copyright © 2020 Marc Schmatjen

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  1. IT'S ONLY DAY 12?! I'm never going to make it.

    1. Stay strong! You can do it. Hotels are still open.

  2. Replies
    1. A lifeboat filled with wine is on its way. Unfortunately, it's coming from China.