Supporting Your Child’s Schedule for Distance Learning
It’s worth acknowledging here that our world has changed drastically since sheltering in place due to COVID-19. From an education standpoint, teachers frantically raced against the clock to transition all their lessons to online distance learning, while simultaneously learning said online platform. On the home front, parents faced the new reality of spending 24/7 with their children all while trying to manage working from home. We’re in a topsy-turvy situation at best! Now that school districts across the nation have announced distance learning for the remainder of this school year, how can parents best support their children’s schedule while at home?
Adopt a Healthy Mindset
First and foremost, you are your child’s parent. You are not responsible for imparting all of the world’s content area knowledge upon your child from 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Stop stressing about it! Give yourself an extra measure of grace when things aren’t perfect. Instead, focus on directing your child towards healthy learning habits at home. Make sure your kids have a suitable learning space with the correct tools to access learning online. Develop a regular schedule so they get in the routine of doing “school.” In small doses, help your kids start taking ownership of their own learning!
Manage Your Children’s Schedule
To help your children transition to being at home while still experiencing the predictability and regularity of being at school, set up some structures and boundaries while they are home. It would help to have a family meeting and set up a daily, Monday-Friday academic and activity schedule with their input. Older children may have regular classes on video conferencing platforms. It may help to create a shared family calendar online so that everyone has access to the family’s activities. This will help establish some independent “work” time for them while you may also be working from home.
Connect with Your Children
Parenting is all about connecting with your children and being an advocate for their best physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual interests. Schedule “recess” and “snack breaks” to have together throughout your day in between your conference calls. Tell “Dad” jokes and laugh together. Get up, exercise, move around, take a walk, set up simple work-out stations at home. This is good for both young and young at heart! Ask them about their progress on their academic discoveries or creative explorations. Take the opportunity to bond with your kids on a deeper level during dinner and slow down the hectic pace of life.
Wishing you all the best,
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