How To Help Your Child Cope With Online Learning At Home
Keeping a routine, staying healthy and maintaining a positive attitude is important to help your child cope with online learning during the coronavirus pandemic.
School closure because of coronavirus has affected more than 130 countries worldwide and disrupted the education of 1.2 billion children and youth.
Many schools with internet capabilities have already moved into online education and children are forced to adapt to a new form of learning without social interactions and face-to-face support. Children look to adults for guidance and support. With many Australian families, this responsibility now lies with the parent(s). According to a report from SMH, many parents are buckling from the stress of supporting their children, while trying to hold on to vulnerable jobs and coping with WFH changes.
In Sydney, for example, almost 90% of students are learning remotely. NSW Department of Education says the classes do not require parental supervision. But many parents claim that close supervision is necessary, especially for children in early primary, children who are struggling to concentrate and stay motivated and children with special needs.
Below are some tips to help parents and children cope with online schooling during the COVID-19 pandemic:
TIP #1: Develop a Routine
Keeping a routine can create a sense of normalcy for your child. Have your son/daughter wake up at the same time every morning. Get him/her to do all the same things they would do as if they were going to school, for example, brush their teeth, change out of their pyjamas, eat breakfast and put on a uniform even if it is not required.
TIP #2: Create a dedicated learning space
Set up a place in the home for your son/daughter to study online. This can be a desk in their bedroom, the kitchen bench, or a corner of the dining table. It has to be a dedicated space where they can place their laptop, books, drink bottle and stationery.
TIP #3: Treat school like a real school
Make sure your child spends time studying online as if they are studying in an actual classroom. This includes taking attendance and completing homework.
TIP #4: Support the teachers
Teachers are doing their best. They have been tasked to shift to distance learning virtually overnight.
TIP # 5: Exercise
Schedule small breaks between lessons to help your child focus better. Plopping down on a couch and turning on the television or chatting on their mobiles are fine but limit these activities to ‘after-school’ hours.
Instead, encourage your child to go out to the garden to kick a ball, shoot a few hoops or ride a bike. Staying physically healthy is important during these periods of self-isolation.
TIP #6: Eat healthy
During self-isolation, your child’s physical exercise is dramatically reduced. They cannot go to the playground, play sports or participate in any recreational activities. You must ensure that they eat a good diet to keep them healthy.
One of the negative impacts of studying at home is that the fridge and pantry are easily accessible. Children love snacking. It will be difficult to stop them and you cannot monitor their movements all the time. Consider buying some healthy snacks like fresh fruits the next time you do a supermarket shop.
Tip #7: Avoid computer-related injuries
Learning on the computer is now the norm. But long periods of using a computer can increase your child’s chance of developing an injury. Inappropriate computer use or bad posture can cause muscle and joint pain, and overuse injuries to the back, neck, shoulder, arm, and wrist.
You can reduce these risks by providing better furniture and teaching them about good posture and habits. Yoga is an excellent way to perform simple stretches to loosen tighten muscles and reduce tension. TopKidz Academy has some great resources of simple and harmless yoga poses your child can learn for free online.
TIP #8: Stay connected
Playdates are out but your child can still connect with friends through popular messaging apps like Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber, Zoom or WeChat.
TIP #9: Share your feelings
Encourage your child to express their feelings. Self-isolation is stressful for everyone – including your child. Spend time talking to them, motivating them and helping them cope during this challenging time.
TIP #10: Look for online resources
If you are keen to grow your child’s online learning experience, Top Kidz Academy has a plethora of information to find free or inexpensive options for your child to learn science, geography, history, literacy and arts and crafts.
Story of the day “DO WHAT YOU CAN”
Musician and activist, Jon Bon Jovi, wrote a song to bring people together during coronavirus.
Bon Jovi wrote the first verse and the chorus only. The rest of the song will be completed by the stories from everyone else.