Turn a Sick Day into a School Day

One of the downfalls of homeschooling is that school can easily be blown off if anyone involved is sick.  Comedian is 2 1/2 years old and can tell you when she is sick but the day or two before it hits her she is incredibly cranky.  It makes school time very difficult and sometimes just impossible.  Everyone in our house got sick again this week.  It was just a cold but the girls were in no shape for our normal school day. Luckily they got sick at the same time so it won’t be staggered this time with one getting sick as the other is getting better.

I wasn’t planning on doing any of the planned schoolwork but I still needed to entertain them all day at home without relying too much on videos. We normally don’t watch much T.V. We actually don’t have any kind of T.V. service but we can stream videos on our computers or iPad. Our lack of T.V. viewing makes it easy to hand over the iPad to the kids when they are sick. But I was trying to avoid that since they weren’t all that sick. It was just a cold. At the end of the day, we realized that we did do schoolwork and a lot of it!

Fine Motor Skills

Storyteller has a beading kit that was a bit too difficult for her when she first got it and Comedian liked to scatter the beads so it wasn’t something she could be involved with at all. It’s been sitting on a shelf for a while now but I thought it might be time to give it another try. Storyteller was still convinced that she couldn’t do it so she designed the bracelet and I put the beads on. Towards the end she tried a few beads and was thrilled to see that she could get them on the string by herself. Comedian wanted to make her own bracelet too and was determined to do it all herself. She actually managed to get the larger beads on. This is a great activity for fine motor skills.

Language Arts

Now is a great time of year for fun seasonal craft projects for kids. There are also many worksheet type activities available online. A quick search on Pinterest pulls up many options. These are great for making use of a sick day. It’s still an educational activity but it’s more like play for the kids and it’s much easier to clean up than a big craft project. I pulled out a color, cut and paste turkey worksheet where the girls matched up lower and upper case letters.

Nature Study

We went outside to play for a bit. We checked for bugs around the garden and found two lizards hanging out around the broccoli. They actually stuck around for a few moments so we could get a good look at them. The first of our peas were ready to pick for a quick snack. We fed the worms in our worm compost bin and noted that we really need to start feeding them more often. The weather has been great for them so they are powering through the food.


By bedtime we were ready to break out the DVDs and cuddle up on the couch. The girls actually chose math and science DVDs. Mathtacular has several DVDs that help bring math to life with short videos. We ordered the first DVD to supplement Horizons Math K. I had actually forgotten about it but we recently dusted it off. The girls really love it. We watched a few videos that reviewed some material that she’s been working on. Place values were introduced this week in our math lessons so we watched those videos as well to prep for the upcoming lessons.


The science DVD we watched is InquisiKids Discover and Do. It is included with Sonlight’s Science A program. It is a collection of almost 100 short videos of science experiments. We plan on using this science program next year but we already have the DVD and the girls really love it. During our “sick” day, we watched a few videos about bases and acids. The first one demonstrated baking soda and vinegar. The second video had powdered citric acid and baking soda mixed but it was not bubbling. The guy doing the experiment asked why it is wasn’t bubbling and right away Storyteller yelled at the T.V., “You need a liquid!” I love seeing when something clicks in her head.

Lazy days are needed every now and then but it felt good to turn a sick day into a school day even if it was different than what I had planned. Different was a great fit for that day. We ended up covering fine motor skills, nature study, language arts, math and science. We also spent a lot of down time cuddling on the couch with our Sonlight books. What could have been a lazy sick day turned out to be a productive and fun school day.



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