School is out and a nation of parents are grappling with the conundrum of how to keep their children fit, happy and educated during the coronavirus lockdown.
More than 800,000 people tuned in to YouTube on Monday to watch celebrity exercise guru Joe Wicks — AKA The Body Coach — as he launched himself as the nation’s PE teacher.
Joe bounded around in front of a camera doing kangaroo hops and frog jumps in a bid to keep youngsters (and in many cases their mums and dads) in shape.
But the 33-year-old star of Instagram (formerly more of a hit with mums than their bored offspring) is not the only celebrity to turn teacher in this time of global crisis.
More than 800,000 people tuned in to YouTube on Monday to watch celebrity exercise guru Joe Wicks — AKA The Body Coach — as he launched himself as the nation’s PE teacher
A growing array of famous faces have also offered their talents online in a bid to home-school Britain’s children.
With a little help from this celebrity faculty, the curriculum is surprisingly well-covered.
Here Beth Hale has the lowdown on who is doing what…
Dance with Oti in Shrek onesie!
TEACHER: Strictly Come Dancing star Oti Mabuse, with her dancer husband Marius Lepure.
CLASS: 30-minute themed classes for children, daily at 11.30am (adults can join in too, at 7.30pm).
CREDENTIALS: Strictly champion, victorious captain on The Greatest Dancer.
STYLE: Bouncy and fun. They’ve danced in Shrek-themed onesies!
VERDICT: It’s not slick, but kids will love watching. Go to: Oti Mabuse Official on YouTube.
Storytime with Floella
TEACHER: Former Play School legend, Baroness (now Dame) Floella Benjamin.
CLASS: Who better to read the nation a story than Floella?
CREDENTIALS: Her stint as one of the nation’s best-known children’s TV presenters has equipped the 70-year-old to treat our children at the end of a home-school day.
STYLE: Nostalgic and entertaining, just as you’d expect.
VERDICT: Mums and dads who grew up with her will listen in delight. Go to: Floella Benjamin on YouTube.
Former Play School legend, Baroness (now Dame) Floella Benjamin is pictured above. Who better to read the nation a story than Floella?
Maths with Carol
TEACHER: The original Countdown numbers queen Carol Vorderman.
CLASS: A whole maths education framework on Carol’s online maths platform The Maths Factor. She’s waived the subscription (about £2 a week).
CREDENTIALS: Come on, didn’t you see her on Countdown?
STYLE: Slick. Covers the curriculum from ages four to 11.
VERDICT: A virtual classroom.
GO TO: www.themathsfactor.com
A whole maths education framework is on Carol’s online maths platform The Maths Factor. She’s waived the subscription (about £2 a week)
English and Elevenses from David Walliams
TEACHER: Author, comedian and actor David Walliams.
CLASS: ‘Elevenses’, as he puts it, an 11am reading of one of the Gangsta Granny author’s World’s Worst Children stories, every day for 30 days on his own website.
CREDENTIALS: Formerly better known for comic turns on Little Britain, Walliams turned his hand to children’s fiction in 2008 and regularly tops the list of the nation’s bestselling authors.
STYLE: This isn’t David and a camera from his front room, it’s a slick audio book. But he has a very expressive voice.
VERDICT: Some parents may sneer, but the man described as the successor to Roald Dahl reads a cracking tale.
Formerly better known for comic turns on Little Britain, Walliams turned his hand to children’s fiction in 2008 and regularly tops the list of the nation’s bestselling authors
He didn’t finish the biology degree he started with the Open University, but Backshall, 46, has won awards for his wildlife shows
Biology with wildlife hunk Steve Backshall
TEACHER: Wildlife presenter and father to twins, Steve Backshall.
CLASS: Wildlife, biology, with conservation, geography and exploration — the Q&A session went live for the first time at 9.30am on Wednesday, on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube and lasted 57 minutes.
CREDENTIALS: He didn’t finish the biology degree he started with the Open University, but Backshall, 46, has won awards for his wildlife shows.
STYLE: Rugged, engaging, viewers are entertained with fascinating facts about the bee fly and answering questions such as ‘do fish have ears?’ (nothing external, but they can hear).
VERDICT: Just Steve and a camera, but full of facts. Go to: www.facebook. com/stevebackshallofficial/
Making music with Myleene and her girls in their kitchen
TEACHER: Radio host and ex pop star Myleene Klass.
CLASS: Myleene’s Music Klass (see what she did?), Mondays and Fridays at 10am and lullabies for little ones at 6.30pm on Wednesdays, on her YouTube channel.
CREDENTIALS: The mother of-three, 41, is a classically trained pianist.
STYLE: No instruments required, says Myleene, who had daughters Hero, eight, and Ava, 12, on hand to explain the difference between quavers and crotchets in her first class.
VERDICT: Engaging. Music from Myleene’s kitchen with her girls tapping the rhythm of their names using a saucepan and a chopstick.
A whiteboard, vases of flowers, a glimpse of a baby toy in the corner; a highquality home affair, looks and sounds good.
GO TO: YouTube as Myleene’s Music Klass
Myleene’s Music Klass (see what she did?), Mondays and Fridays at 10am and lullabies for little ones at 6.30pm on Wednesdays, on her YouTube channel
He’s got four cookbooks, is an executive chef and presenter. He also has three children who joined in the first lesson
Home Economics (and tea!) with MasterChef star Theo
TEACHER: MasterChef semi-finalist Theo Michaels.
CLASS: Tea is covered on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays with Theo hosting a live cook-along of a ‘simple store cupboard meal’ at 4pm (get the ingredients prepped by checking his website in advance). Recipes so far have included pizza flatbreads and home-made gnocchi.
CREDENTIALS: He’s got four cookbooks, is an executive chef and presenter. He also has three children who joined in the first lesson.
STYLE: Theo at home with his kids, ‘a bit of fun’, he says.
VERDICT: Noisy, messy and most importantly simple.
GO TO: www.Theocooks.com
Shakespeare’s sonnetts with Oscar-winner Helen
TEACHER: Masterclass with Academy Award-winning actress Dame Helen Mirren.
CLASS: Not really a class as such, more of a one-off in reading Shakespeare.
Dame Helen, who is in isolation in Lake Tahoe on the border of California and Nevada in the U.S., posted a video on Instagram on Monday, reading Sonnet 18 — ‘Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?’ — the Bard’s most famous poem, apparently from her kitchen table.
CREDENTIALS: Royal Shakespeare Company, Oscar for her starring role in The Queen, she’s acting royalty.
STYLE: Unglossy and utterly watchable.
VERDICT: A masterclass in reading Shakespeare for the English student.
GO TO: Helen’s page on Instagram
Noel gives a theme (for instance Italy) and encourages budding artists young and old to send him pictures of their work via social media
Crumbs! It’s art with Bake Off presenter Noel Fielding
TEACHER: Kooky Bake Off presenter, comedian and artist Noel Fielding.
CLASS: Not much teaching, more online encouragement to be artistic.
Noel gives a theme (for instance Italy) and encourages budding artists young and old to send him pictures of their work via social media.
CREDENTIALS: He trained at Croydon Art College and creates art that actually sells.
STYLE: Getting kids to send in creations like Tony Hart of Take Hart fame.
VERDICT: Give us a bit more inspiration Noel. Let’s see YOU painting.
GO TO: Noel_Fielding on Instagram.
Physics with Brian Cox is just out of this world
TEACHER: Brian Cox, ex D: Ream keyboard player, television presenter.
CLASS: On Saturday he took part in a live science Q&A for youngsters. Last night he was due to help host an online event for astronauts to talk about living in isolation.
CREDENTIALS: Professor of particle physics at the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Manchester.
STYLE: Described as the successor for the BBC’s scientific programming by both Sir David Attenborough and the late Sir Patrick Moore.
VERDICT: Watch it and see.
GO TO: Twitter — @profbriancox
Writer Rob shows how to draw scary monsters
TEACHER: Rob Biddulph (right with daughter Poppy) author and illustrator of children’s books such as Blown Away.
CLASS: Learn how to draw creations from his stories, Tuesday and Thursday at 10am on Twitter, YouTube and his website.
CREDENTIALS: Small children love his work.
STYLE: Step-by-step guide to drawing creatures such as the Gregosaurus.
VERDICT: Fab! A five year-old (my daughter Elise) can do it.
Learn how to draw creations from his stories, Tuesday and Thursday at 10am on Twitter, YouTube and his website. He is pictured above with daughter Poppy