Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Welcome Back to School and Distance Learning



Many students and teachers are heading back to school and in a distance learning situation. How should students and parents prepare for this new environment? Here are some helpful tips that may help your children to succeed. 


 1. Organize a study place. 
 The place of study at home could be a nook in a room with a bean bag chair, a traditional desk, yoga mat or all three. Whatever makes your child comfortable in the 6 hour long work day. You might even decide to have several study locations available for a change of pace. Add his or her school work schedule in a prominent location. Provide shelving or designate a place for reference materials, books, craft materials and other electronic devices. You and your child can craft decorations for the study place, add a colorful plant and provide inspirational posters. Scented plug ins for the room will give a nice aroma, such as lavender, pumpkin spice or vanilla. 

 2. Create a checklist of daily work for the week.
After creating the checklist, have your learner check off the assignments as they go. 

 3. Highlight due dates. 
Some work may not be due until the end of the week. Have your child work on the assignment daily or as required, so that the work will be completed in the best possible way and not all at once. 

 4. Create a distance learning work routine that includes breaks. 
 Some classes might be at a certain time of day where your child will need to be present online to contribute to the topic. Plan around these times and offer a time to relax, and off of the computer device. What does your child like to do? It may be time to make a craft, ride a bike, fiddle around in a garden, or draw and play some music. Try to limit computer or online games in favor of physical activities.

 5. Decide if you want to monitor the daily work or use a trust system. 
Make sure the assignments are completed or if your child is mature, use the trust system. Having a student learn to develop ownership of his or her learning is so important. But, sometimes when children are not ready to take on such a large task, parents need to check the work. Last year, a math teacher called the day before the end of the quarter to say not all work had been completed in my child's math class. This led to a race to the finish for my child to complete the work. How much real learning can be done in this manner? 

 6. Reward, reward, reward. 
Noted, work is not always rewarded in the regular work world. But, a child is not in the traditional work world yet. So, when your child has checked off all the work for the day or week, allow them to choose a reward. Having a treasure box or goody bag at home filled with small toys, crafts, squishy or slime and clay can make the end of the school week more fun. Also, playing family board games such as bingo or chess, having an indoor or outdoor picnic, or family movie with popcorn can provide something to look forward to for your learners during the week.

Stay safe!


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