As a parent, you worry about your kids all the time - whether they are challenged enough in school, what they eat for dinner, etc. Which is one side of the coin. The other side is everything a parent does to prepare their kids for success (and mitigate that worry inside). This is more important than ever right now...
Despite the ever-changing impact of COVID-19, we’re wired to adapt to circumstances and create normalcy where possible. A big part of that involves getting back to regularly scheduled events as safe as we can - like school. In just a few weeks, kids will start a new school year, and as a part of their “new normal,” many will opt for distance learning instead of attending in person.
To help gear your kids up for the new school year, here are 7 top tips for successful distance learning:
1. Know your workload
Before attending the first day of school, make sure your child has studied the syllabus front and back to better prepare for what’s ahead. Distance learning typically means less face-time with teachers, so it’s important they take it upon themselves to mentally prepare for upcoming assignments, midterms, and projects to come.
2. Create a study space
Similar to when you work from home, kids need their own space to focus, too. That’s why we suggest designating a place in your home as their “study space.” This allows them a way to clock in and clock out of (home)work the same way you check out from the office each day.
3. Set a study schedule - and stick to it
If you have a hard time staying accountable for work, imagine how a fifth grade boy with an Xbox 10 feet from him, and snacks on snacks in the kitchen will act when school starts. To offset the distractions, we recommend setting a schedule for distance learning to help keep your kids on track with assignments, daily lessons, studying, and projects. Simple wall calendars or phone alarms can be a game-changer when it comes to school deadlines.
4. Ask questions and engage during lessons
It may take some time for your child to adjust to distance learning, but one thing that really seems to help is staying engaged and asking lots of questions during a video lesson. The more they interact with their teacher and peers during class time, the more likely they are to remember what they’ve learned.
5. Find a study group
For the social learners out there, this one is key. While people continue to practice social distancing physically, there’s no rule against staying in touch over phone or FaceTime. Make sure your social butterfly has a way to stay in touch with school friends and form solid study groups that will help close the learning gap from home.
6. Learn the technology being used before actually having to use it
You might be thinking that Gen Y and Gen Zers have technology covered. But when it comes to distance learning for school, there’s still a bit of a learning curve even for them. Be sure to practice logging into whatever device your school supplies your child with (tablet, laptop, etc.), learn which programs they will be using on a daily basis (Zoom, Google Meet, etc.), and get their study space prepped for success. That includes headphones, a mic, a camera, and a reliable Internet connection to get them through the day.
7. Have a reliable Internet connection
If nothing else, we recommend securing a reliable Internet to set your kids up for success this school year. You can’t partake in distance learning without it. And everyone knows there’s nothing worse than getting interrupted during work or mid-Netflix-binge because of a lost or slow Internet connection. Upgrading your Internet to a secure connection like GVTC Premium WiFi will give you the home coverage, speeds, and device connectivity you need to make everyone successful at home.