Keeping kids on track while schooling remotely

Keeping kids on track while schooling remotely

by Stacy Roman
Stripes Europe

As DoDEA schools in Europe continue to close and most host nation schools shuttered, tens of thousands of students are switching from face-to-face instruction to online learning platforms. Digital learning is a fantastic alternative; however, it can also present a unique set of challenges. After speaking with a few who have experienced similar situations in South Korea, here are a few ways to help keep your kids on track as they embark in unfamiliar territory.

1. There is a plan in place. While many of the school closures may have seemed to come rapidly, most teachers and administrators have been meeting behind the scenes. Although there may be a few days before implementation, rest assured there is a digital plan in place. Apps and sites such as Google Classroom, Hangouts and Meet will likely be used to help with assignments and lessons.

2. Check your resources. Coordinate with your school administrators and/or teachers to ensure you have all the resources necessary. If you don’t have access to a tablet or computer for your student, talk with the school. Often, there is equipment available for loan.

3. Keep to a schedule. One of my friends recently posted a daily routine her husband devised after noticing a little procrastination creeping in. Write out specific times and expectations, such as wake up time, designated school hours and free time.

4. Schedule breaks. Just like a normal school day, they’re going need to take a breather. Be sure to schedule lunch and snack breaks. Let them chat online or FaceTime with their friends for a few minutes between lessons.

5. Keep them moving. It’s easy to let them plop on the couch and veg in front of the Xbox. However, fresh air works wonders. If you’re able, take a short walk around the neighborhood (keeping in mind good social distancing mandates) or play in the backyard. If you’re not able to venture outside, download a few fun fitness apps or games for them to try out.

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