GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — There are several free resources for parents and students who will be home now all schools in the state are closed.
Monday, March 16, marked the first day all Michigan’s public and private schools will be closed for three weeks to combat the spread of a rising number of coronavirus cases. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced the K-12 closures last week.
When asked Sunday if the school closure length will be extended, she said she has not yet made that decision.
“We haven’t even gotten to the first day of the closure, so I think that it’s too early to tell,” Whitmer said. “Five days ago when we were voting in a primary, it seems like about a month ago. What we are confronting is changing so rapidly, it wouldn’t be responsible for me to guess where we will be. As we proceed, we will keep you updated if there is a need to change or alter what the plan is.”
Experts say parents should take the first day off, treating it as a snow day. It will start off the next few weeks on a positive.
Then parents are recommended to organize a schedule and stick to it during the closure. Experts say children learn better with structure and repetition. Try to keep the schedule similar to their school schedule, but make time for fun. It can include incorporating creative outlets into lessons, or use fun projects as breaks for harder subjects like math and science.
If you’re a parent looking for ideas to keep your children learning during this time, many online learning tools are now free for the next month because of the pandemic.
The following is a list of free educational resources:
- Abney Academic Extention
- Amazing Educational Resources
- Boom Learning
- Highlights Kids
- Kalamazoo Public Schools Learning Hub
- Khan Academy
- Kids Discover
- Learning A-Z
- National Geographic Kids
- Michigan State University: Educational resources
- Oxford Owl for Home
- PBS Kids
- Phonics Hero
- Scholastic Learn at Home
- Squiggle Park
- Storyline Online
- Switch Zoo
- TIME for Kids
- Van Andel Institute for Education staff picks
- Van Andel Institute: Prevent the Spread
- Virtual Field Trips
A number of school districts in West Michigan are opening up grab-and-go meal sites amid the COVID-19 pandemic while schools are closed.