Now that school has resumed across Australia for Term 2, you may find yourself wondering how you can best monitor your children’s online learning during this time of isolation. Online learning from home may seem like a daunting thought, but with some simple measures in place you can help to facilitate a healthy online learning experience. Follow our online learning tips to ensure your child is still as focused on their education as ever!
Online Learning Tip 1: Assign a learning area
By setting aside an area of your house for learning, you can help your children to get back into the mindset of learning. Allowing your children to do their learning in their areas of leisure – think their bedroom or in front of the television – is not the best idea. Not only will this create distractions, it will also muddy the line between school time and relaxation time.
In a sense, this technique mimics the classroom environment. By creating a specific place for learning and learning only, you can help your child stay focused and stick to a regular routine. Depending on your living arrangements, this could be an entire room or limited to a specific desk or space.
Online Learning Tip 2: Be involved (where possible)
By actively involving yourself within your children’s learning, you are providing your child with another outlet to bounce ideas off and provide help. Ask questions about their day, how it is progressing and what they are learning about. If you are familiar with the topic, maybe you could engage them in an informal discussion. This could be done at certain break points during the day or when you see them at the end of a day of learning.
This can also help in keeping your child accountable for their own learning. By asking for updates on their learning process, you are helping them to stay focused and on-topic.
Online Learning Tip 3: Limit devices and distractions
The home is generally regarded as a place of relaxation and leisure, so your children will likely have trouble breaking free from that mindset when adapting to online learning. By reducing distractions where possible, you can help your children focus on their schoolwork.
Creating separation between leisure devices and school devices can be a fantastic tool for reducing distractions. The school laptop or device should be free from any social games and apps, limiting recreational time spent during school hours. If this is not physically possible, help your child create separation between school and leisure by limiting their play time till after schoolwork is completed. Using play time on devices as a reward for completing schoolwork can be a handy technique for maintaining focus.
Online Learning Tip 4: Encourage regular breaks
An important point in learning from home has to do with how your children spend break times. By allowing for regular breaks that are totally separate from work time, you can help to encourage productivity during the assigned learning times.
Make sure that your child is taking their lunch breaks and other small breaks during the day. While they are taking a break, encourage them to change their environment out of their workspace. Encourage them to cook a meal, socialise with their family members or do something active! This can work wonders for productivity.
Online Learning Tip 5: Stick to the schedule
Sticking to your normal schedule can help in mimicking your normal habits. This is great to reinforce to your children that while they may be at home, they are still expected to be continuing with their studies as normal. This is not an extended holiday at home after all!
This point is largely dependent on the way that their school is handling their online learning, as they may have a clear schedule already. But a consistent and regular wake-up time, break time and finishing time can help your child plan and manage their learning.
While your child’s new learning situation is not truly business as usual, there is no reason that your child’s education must suffer as a result. By creating specific learning areas, staying involved, limiting distractions, encouraging breaks and creating a straightforward schedule you can ensure that your child’s online learning experience is enriching and productive.
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