Reducing Stress Around Remote Learning

As the coronavirus pandemic rages on across much of the county, schools have had to rethink their opening plans for the start of the new school year. Many schools are opting for full remote learning, or a hybrid schedule. In either case, it is clear that students will not be returning to all in-person classes in the immediate future. This has caused a lot of stress for students and parents alike as they figure out what that means for their family.

One thing to remember is that virtual learning this fall will not look like it did in the spring. When schools shut down in March, districts scrambled to come up with a plan on the fly. There was little time to strategize and ensure the right resources were in place. As school starts up again in August or September, districts and teachers have had more time to plan and figure out what remote learning will look like. It may take a little time to adjust, but things should run more smoothly.

As your kids begin their virtual learning, here are few tips to reduce their stress and anxiety:

Find a quiet place to work. With multiple children and parents all working from home, it’s a good idea to spread out when possible. Having everyone sitting around the kitchen table may not be the best idea if more than one person has a Zoom call at the same time, or someone is doing a video conference and someone else is trying to focus on an assignment. Set each child up in their own area where they can focus but you can still keep an eye on them and offer help as needed. Make sure they have any supplies they might need too, such as notebooks, pencils, and a calculator.

Create a visual schedule. Learning from home, students don’t have their teacher there to transition them from one activity to the next. They are responsible for making sure they log into video calls on time each day. It can be helpful to create a visual schedule for each day so that students know what to expect and what they need to be doing at certain times. You can also put reminders on their (or your) phone or tablet as another alert. Creating a routine and knowing what comes next is very calming for many kids.

Work at your own pace. Many schools have developed plans where students will engage in live, online learning for around 2 hours per day, then have the remaining time to work on assignments independently. This gives students a lot of flexibility to complete tasks at their own speed. If they are feeling overwhelmed and need a break mid-day, they can take it. Maybe math is something they work on after dinner because that’s when the other parent gets home so there is more help available. Pay attention to due dates, but remind your child that they do not have to cram everything in to a short period of time.

Practice self-care. Take regular breaks. Go to bed at a decent time each night to get plenty of sleep and tackle each day well rested. Eat healthy meals and snacks to fuel the body and brain with the nutrients they need. Plan socially distant or online playdates with friends so students can connect with peers outside of scheduled lessons.

Know how to get in touch. Talk with your child’s teacher to find out the best ways to connect with them. It could range from email or phone to an online chat or video call. Your child’s teacher may schedule a regular time to check in with each student and see if there is anything they need. Knowing how to get help when they need it can be reassuring.

Reassure your child. Remind them that remote learning is new for almost everyone, so everyone is learning and adjusting together. Teachers understand that some students have a harder time with online classes than others, but they are doing everything they can to provide necessary support. This school year will not make or break their entire education, and they’re probably learning more than they realize.

If certain subjects are harder for your child than others, reach out to Crafting Scholars to learn more about our online and in-person tutoring as well as online classes. We are working with educators and families to ensure that students receive the support and assistance they need to stay on track with their learning. Contact us today for more information.