Even in the age of technology, virtual learning is something brand new to many of us. Going from spending the day in the classroom to spending the day at home, in front of a computer, can be a challenge for kids who crave movement. Here are a few tips to help keep your kids focused and make virtual learning a more enjoyable experience for all.
Know what works for your child and be clear about expectations.
A mix of synchronous and asynchronous activities is best to keep children engaged throughout the day. Sitting still in front of a computer screen for several hours a day isn't realistic for anyone, especially young children. Having a mix of live instruction and off-screen activities will help them stay focused.
Having a clear understanding of each day's expectations and each activity can also help keep you and your child on track with virtual learning. Your child's teacher and school district should have a list of expectations for you to review.
Make time for breaks and exercise.
Movement is important for both physical and mental health. Allowing your child to take breaks as needed in between activities to stretch and move around will help their brains and bodies refocus. There are great resources for these brain breaks, just google it!
Take that opportunity to give yourself a break as well. Virtual learning is new to all of us, and parents need a chance to decompress to best support their children through the virtual learning experience.
Create an environment that's conducive to learning.
Distractions like television, phones, siblings, toys, and outside noise will make it harder for your child to stay focused on learning. Eliminate as many distractions as possible and have a designated area for schoolwork.
Reward good behavior.
Remember that virtual learning is new to all of us and can be overwhelming, especially for kids. Reward them when they complete a task by giving them praise. Try not to focus so much on the negative so that they don't get discouraged. For every negative comment, they need three positives to affirm learning.
Virtual learning can be successful if you have the right tools. These tips will help make this year of virtual learning more enjoyable for both you and your kids.
Learning from home is very challenging and new for many of us. It’s important to have grace for your children, and yourself, during this time. Helping your kids stay focused during school online isn’t going to be easy or something that your family can perfect overnight. However, by creating a consistent schedule, developing a positive environment, and rewarding good behavior, you can set you and your kids up for a successful school year.