How To Deal With COVID-19 Anxiety For Parents & Kids From Dr. Bob: Helping Parents and Kids Stay Cool and Collected During the COVID-19 Outbreak .
Is Your Kids’ School Helping?
Most schools and teachers are working hard to continue educating kids from home, though those efforts likely depend on the resources available through your children’s school. Some will quickly evolve and lead the effort, others, perhaps through no fault of their own and rather a lack of resources, will not be able to help parents as much.
Here’s some helpful information to help parents gauge the efforts and effectiveness of their kids’ school so that they can work on their own to supplement feeding youthful brains the information and knowledge needed to help them grow and prosper.
Did the school provide a daily schedule? Daily lessons with learning structure and guidance?
Is the school using phones, tablets and/or computers to communicate with your kids online?
Is the schoolwork being assigned enough to fulfill the academic needs of your overachiever?
Or, does your little dreamer need more time and space to tackle their own areas of interest?
If that last bullet point is true, have your child pick an area of interest (beetles, robots, mosaic, etc.) and get them on a project that may lead them down a whole new life path. At a minimum, it will keep them engaged, entertained and educated. A related idea to consider: How To Create A Homework Space For Your Child!
Did you know that even tried and true homeschoolers don’t try and fill out a six-hour day. For instance, it’s recommended a student in the third to fifth grade range receive instruction for 1-2 hours per day. Studies even suggest that teachers in a normal classroom setting only teach new material for seven minutes per class period, the rest of the time filled with managing all those young personalities and inclinations.
Children’s attention span runs in spurts, so it doesn’t hurt to spread out the more formal learning and fill in the open spots with fun, engaging and slyly educational activities. Take lots of breaks! Pace yourself and the kids: take education seriously, of course, but learning takes many forms and this is your family’s chance to explore, well, knowledge.
Kinda On Your Own? You Can Do This!
If you’re not getting much help from your kids’ educational institutions, that puts more work on you, but know you can handle it and don’t beat yourself up if things don’t go according to plan every day. It’s more important that kids know you care and you’re there for them and you’re trying than to retain a few extra facts throughout a given day.
Here are some flexible strategies to help your kids keep learning even during this stressful time:
Get Scheduled: Creating and sticking to a set routine is critical. Work it up with your students, review and revise daily. Don’t overschedule and flexibility is your friend.
Work Together: Time work and play activities at the same time as your kids so they don’t feel like they’re being ignored, but don’t forget to give each other space, as well.
Manage Screen Time: A video is fine, a few videos are fine, hours worth of random YouTube videos? Not fine. Find the middle ground!
Take Breaks: Get outside as much as possible. It’s a game changer for a cooped up family. Sometimes chores can feel like taking a break: doing some laundry or cooking with your child or just one of multiple children can turn into solid bonding time.
Be Healthy: This can be difficult with schedules so disrupted, but all of this enforced down time also gives parents some extra time to spend learning about nutrition, exercise and sleep. It’s an important time to keep the family’s collective immune system at a high level and sleep is an important part of that.
You Need To Do You: Take some time to yourself, pieces of enforced downtime for everyone in the family. This will help siblings get a break from each other and will hopefully give you those moments of family you so need and deserve.