Tips for Parents Managing Distance Learning at Home

Distance learning is a skill that, when mastered, opens routes to lifelong educational opportunities!

Although our collective journey as parents of school-aged children has been bumpy on a global scale since March of 2020, we have all found ourselves making strides in our endeavors to accommodate our kids’ educational needs. Despite massive odds against all parents, there are a few key tips that have helped online learning aid our children in their educational blossoming. You can also click here for more information on online learning.

Proper Tools:

While this may seem to be an obvious answer, a more in-depth analysis of what online learning tool kits should include exposes the fact that a lot of thought must be given by both teachers and parents. Because our homes aren’t always set up to resemble a school and supplies aren’t readily available for parents, many public school resources now include WiFi, tablets, and handout bags for parents. Many of these handout bags contain surplus activities for children that coincide with the school agenda — allowing a free form style of supplemental learning. Public schools are more than eager to supply parents with technology as well, even including hotspots for parents who find themselves lacking.

Many of these supplies also include long-term keepsakes, such as charts that can be pinned to cork boards or taped on the wall next to your child’s desks or tables. Another tool many parents enjoy employing is the slew of educational games for kids that exist on many online platforms.

Adequately allocating space:

Because your home is the ultimate safe space for your child, he or she may not readily recognize it as a learning space. Because of this, it is extremely helpful to give your child a spot in a room just for them and their schoolwork. A specific drawer for their school supplies will also help formalize this process. Different grade-appropriate material can be used to decorate your child’s learning space as well and will give your child a sense of importance while using that specific area. 

Many parents find that a small table and chair work well, with adequate supply holders like paper trays or pencil cases. When your child is done with their schoolwork, it is important to clear the table or desk and put valuable books and materials in a safe spot.

Proper outreach:

In spite of the entire globe hunkering down to accommodate this new form of learning, it is still incredibly easy for a parent or guardian to feel as if they are doing it alone. For this reason, many parents find solace in online networking, such as Facebook groups.

Online support groups provide a space to vent frustrations, collect ideas, and fine-tune your specific brand of accommodation for your children.

It is also wise to keep in regular touch with your child’s teacher and principal through email. Because almost all of the work and agenda is tracked online, it is wise to have a knowledgeable framework for navigating school websites and accessing information. 

Proper routines:

Regular schooling is not successful only because of supplies and well-trained teachers; much of what helps a child grow into a responsible adult through their formative years is having a set of boundaries, schedules, and guidelines to adhere to. A child gets up in the morning, eats, gets dressed, and brushes their teeth. At school, their work is divided into categories, all addressed at specific times. Then, they have lunch, bathroom breaks, and recess. This kind of structure allows students to grasp which times are meant for learning, which times are meant for resting, and which times are meant for playing. This lets kids get the most out of each time block. 

When your children are at home for distance learning, it may be a challenge to enforce these different routines on an individual basis, but overlapping as many of these routines and sticking to them for multiple children is the best thing that can be done. Having mealtimes, bathroom breaks, and homework times scheduled, and consistent will keep things going as best as possible. 

Self-care for the whole family:

While this is easier said than done, many find that taking time on the weekend to readjust moods by going to a park or restaurant that is open allows children to reset and provides a sense of balance to the situation. Many schools also have a special day each week that is meant for parents to catch their children up on schoolwork. On this day, there are some schools that don’t even have online learning schedules. Often, schools choose Wednesday for this, as it is the middle of the week. 

Having a reward, like going to a park or eating out when school work has been completed, is a fantastic way to motivate school children and has the double benefit of getting work done while also resetting the mood for the family. 

There are many ways to increase productivity during this time, and this list is by no means the upper limit on what one can do! For optimal success, every family must find out what works best for their individual family members. For a more well-rounded experience, consider extra online resources!

This is a contributed post and therefore may not reflect the views and opinions of this blog or its author.

Rob Gorski

Full time, work from home single Dad to my 3 amazing boys. Oh...and creator fo this blog. :-)
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I don’t understand the backdated articles. Are you writing and then not posting? That might be why people don’t want to pay? On a related note, I love the irony of the articles that people pay to have posted on this site. It’s like they find the exact opposite of how you do things and say “hmm, let’s pay him for some space”.