How to help your child study remotely: tips for parents
How to help your child stay interested and focused during distance learning including analog clocks
Over the past year, the distance learning format has become familiar to us. All this time both teachers and parents intuitively tried to determine what in distance learning works and what does not. And now they can teach and support their children more effectively during the pandemic.
During distance learning, parents shoulder additional responsibility for their children’s academic performance. And parents in such a situation need support as much as children do. Even professional educators find it difficult to homeschool their children, let alone those parents who have no professional training.
Children may not talk as much about pandemic and matching digital clocks and times, distance learning, or complaining about social distance. But they feel it. Parents and teachers need to support their children and always remember that the success of learning depends on it.
Let’s look at a few tips. By adhering to them, parents will be able to keep their children interested in learning and focused during distance learning.
Setting yourself up for a successful learning experience
Create a space for l
earning including matching analog clocks and times
Provide a place for your child to study, read, and be creative. If there isn’t much space in the house, it can just be a desk. Let your child set up his own work space. He may just want to put a color organizer next to his laptop, but he should do it himself. Arranging his workspace will help him be better prepared for his studies.
Establish a daily routine.
The younger a child is, the stricter the schedule he needs: explain to your child what you expect from him. A schedule should always be in front of your child’s eyes, so he doesn’t forget what he needs to do. Older children can use an organizer or an app on their phone.
Tell your child that he has to follow the schedule just as he did on the days he went to school. He should also get up on time, get dressed, brush his teeth, etc.
It is important to take breaks during school. This is especially important for children who have learning and concentration problems. So be sure to break up learning tasks into smaller chunks and take breaks.
Set the right expectations
Find out what teachers expect from online learning. Explain this to your child, and agree that your child will complete all assignments. This will set the right tone for further distance learning.
Explain your own expectations to the child as well. Tell them when the child can spend time with you, and when you can’t be distracted. What can your child do when he or she has learned his or her lessons? Make a list of activities from which your child can choose what he likes best.
If your child needs to use a laptop or smartphone to study, make sure he knows how to use it. If he uses the gadget with his siblings, children should divide their time so they don’t have conflicts.
When your child can’t concentrate, be there for him or her. Support him with encouraging words to get him in the mood to learn.
If you also have to work remotely, you can’t always be there for your child. But it will be much harder for him to learn if no one looks after him at all while he is studying. Try to give your child time from time to time, or ask a family member to be there for them.
Teach your child to manage his or her emotions
Talk to your child about how the body and mind are connected. And if he feels frustration, emotional arousal, or sadness, it can show up in his physical state. Understanding this helps children recognize and manage their emotions.
If there are other electronic gadgets in the house besides the ones your child uses to study – keep them away from where he or she is studying, if possible. Turn off phones or keep them in another room, hide the TV remote. This way your child won’t be tempted to be distracted from his studies.
Bring a little play into the lesson
Young children who don’t like lessons will feel better if you role-play with them. Let him imagine he is a teacher, explorer, or work partner who is doing an important task.
Older kids don’t like games. You can have an honest conversation with them about responsibility (e.g., for them to manage their own emotions). Talk to your child like an adult – this makes it easier for him or her to connect and hear you.
Encouraging achievement and effort
Follow your child’s interests
Remember that almost any child’s hobby, whether it’s Minescraper, pets or tricks, can be used for learning. Read books with your child and do experiments related to their hobbies.
When you create a routine for your child, ask what he likes and what he doesn’t like. Keep this in mind in the plan. For example, if he struggles with math, ask him when he wants to learn it – first or last. Why? Ask your child regularly about his or her progress in distance learning.
Communicate with your child’s teachers and find out about their successes and challenges. Talk to your child about how his day went – what new things he learned, what he liked, what challenges he encountered during the day.
Show them the results of their work
Display your child’s artwork in a prominent place in the house. This lets your child know you’re proud of his or her work and appreciate his or her efforts in learning.
Even older children like it when parents praise them or are proud of their accomplishments. You can even post about his successes on social media – but be sure to ask your child’s permission to do so.
Praise your child for specific things
Instead of just saying, “Well done!” to your child, explain in detail what you liked about his work. If he tried hard, let him know that you noticed it. Was the child able to improve his grade in a subject? Did he learn something new? Or just put in a lot of effort to get the task done? Praise him for all these achievements.
Encourage your child to improve. Focus not on whether the child did well or poorly, but on his progress.
Start with strengths.
Make a connection between what your child likes and the school subjects he struggles with. If he likes sports but doesn’t like to read, buy him a book about soccer to pique his interest. Your child’s schoolteacher can help you find interesting books. Talk to him.
Present the learning assignments properly.
The way you present learning activities to your child has a lot to do with how he will relate to them. If your child is young, present the learning tasks in a playful way. This will spark his interest. Do you want him to do his homework? Arrange a competition: how fast can he do it? Use incentives: for example, offer your child a treat after he does his math homework.
As a teenager, children may start to do poorly in school. This often hides insecurity, boredom, or anxiety. Children hope for our support, even though outwardly it may seem quite the opposite. In such cases, it is important to remain calm and not take the child’s words or actions personally. Treat it with humor.
Establish consequences for poor learning
You may be tempted to let your child sit on the computer longer for learning lessons. But then he will see the computer as a reward and will probably cheat to get the extra time. Instead, offer the child an alternative: “We have three hours of time in the evening. If you have time to do your homework by then, you’ll have time to sit at the computer.”
If you find it difficult to instill in your child an interest in learning, try to make it find meaning in learning. Think with your child about how this can be done. And don’t forget to praise him for his efforts.
Create a good atmosphere at home
Be a friend
If your child is too self critical, ask him what he would say to his friend if he were in a similar situation. Teach your child to be a supportive friend in difficult situations.
Do the same for yourself. Parents often berate themselves for all sorts of shortcomings. But what would your best friend say to you?
Make with your child a list of things for which you are grateful. This will give you a different perspective on many things.
Ask for help when you need it
You won’t always know how to help your child learn. Ask family, teachers, or friends for help. If you are constantly in conflict with your child over homework, the help of someone else can help you stay as a parent.
Talk to the teacher about your child’s success. Focus on the positives above all else. Both the teacher and the child are making an effort to make the learning process successful. And it will be important for the teacher, too, to know what forms of work are best – and you can help him or her with that.
Use humor and be physically active
Every one of us needs to stretch from time to time. Physical activity can lift our spirits and prepare us for learning. Take breaks for your child to take a walk or just move around. This will help him or her regain strength and energy.
Humor is useful in all areas, including learning. Don’t be afraid to seem silly: ask your child silly questions, give equally silly answers, and let your child correct you. Use anything that works.