Having the whole family at home and trying to engage with virtual learning and work activities can be beyond frustrating and complicated to figure out how to juggle it all!
Keep in mind the following tips to help make the most of your at-home learning experience and help encourage more independent learning skills from your child:
- Set up a dedicated workspace for your child with few distractions and preferably a headset with a mic. This helps keep their focus on the sounds of the classroom and the teacher’s voice and the headset microphone helps eliminate background noises so we can hear the children better.
- Eliminate as much background noise as possible! Keep in mind that if you are working or listening to music in the same room your child is in “school” – the whole class can hear you! If possible, set your child up in a separate room from anyone else who is working online.
- Let them move their bodies! Little bodies need to move so we often encourage kids to stand, sit, lie, jump, fidget or doodle during online classes. If this ever becomes a hindrance to their participation, we will let you know, but otherwise, we have found that children are more likely to participate when they can move freely.
- Keep some snacks on-hand. Just like at school, it’s great for kids to regularly fill their brains with water and healthy snacks. Keeping these nearby their desk setup will help curb cravings and minimize reasons for them to get up and wander during class.
- Be a partner in your child’s learning. It can be very frustrating for students of all ages (even high school) to be trying to participate in an online class. When they want to ask a question, they may not get called on, or they may not ever get a chance to share their ideas. This is where parents can be a valuable partner in their child’s learning. Be available to answer their questions or listen to their ideas that were sparked from the class. This can help provide the important feedback loop to promote further learning and critical thinking skills.
Most importantly, remember that your child’s and your family’s mental health takes priority over everything else right now. Reduce the expectations to do everything and focus on setting everyone up for success.
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