How to Make Homeschooling Fun, Not Futile
By Sara Butler
All of a sudden, parents around the country have been thrust into another role: teacher. E-learning can be stressful for everyone involved, which is why the chiropractors at The Joint Chiropractic want to make it just a little bit easier for you. Here are a few chiropractic tips for e-learning to help keep your child healthy both in body and mind as they learn from home.
Set Them Up for Success
Children may be used to learning in a classroom environment. While no one expects you to duplicate that from home, there are some things you can do to encourage comfort and improve concentration. Now, read on and take notes.
Space It Out
One of the best things you can do to help your child learn from home is to dedicate a space for them to learn in. Research has found that children (and adults too!) tend to learn best in environments that are free from distractions, comfortable, quiet, bright, and dedicated to the sole purpose of learning. That same principle can be applied to your workspace as well if you happen to be working from home. Make sure this space is separate from where the kids do other activities, if possible, such as watch television or play video games.
Be Aware of Posture
Children are adaptable to a variety of situations, but one thing that you must make sure of when setting up their learning space is posture. Make sure you have:
- A proper chair - Kids may seem as if they can sit just about anywhere and be comfortable, but providing a supportive chair for them is crucial. Make sure the chair they sit in has a proper back that offers them support, proper cushioning for comfort, and even armrests if they are spending a lot of time at a computer. Make sure their feet sit flat on the floor. If they can’t reach, then get a stool they can put their feet flat on it.
- A proper desk - For a child who is going to sit and do work for a few hours each day, a desk at the proper height is important. This allows them to have a place to prop their tablets or computers up at eye level. It’s important they have their screens at eye level to avoid issues with their necks and upper backs.
Schedules are important to children since it gives them a sense of security -- especially in such uncertain times. That’s why you should create a school schedule and try to stick to it but build in some flexibility. This isn’t a normal school day for them, so make sure to take plenty of breaks throughout the day to give their little bodies and minds a rest. Everyone should take a break for a least a few minutes once per hour to get moving and stretch, anyway -- including you!
Always make time for snacks and, of course, recess (depending on the age of your child). Set alarms on your phone as a reminder to take breaks often and encourage your child to get up and even get outside for a few minutes.
Don’t Let Them Be an E-Learning Potato
Speaking of getting moving, do what you can to help your child not to be sedentary during this time at home. You want a scholar, not a couch potato. You can help them by having a daily recess or PE class, but also by encouraging them to get outside each day. Also, try mixing up screen time with other ways of learning such as printed packets they can take outside or:
- Outdoor art class
- Sidewalk chalk art (and practicing the alphabet!)
- Science experiments
- Nature hikes
- Obstacle course
- Scavenger Hunts
If you can organize learning activities outdoors, it’ll help your kids to get moving and help to break up their day to make things more engaging -- a win/win!
Remind Them That It’s Not Vacation!
Being at home right now may very well feel like a vacation to your child, but it’s incredibly important to remind them of the importance of their education. It should be made clear that they have school obligations that they still must fulfill even if their classes have moved online.
Many parents focus on the educational aspects of school but can forget about the social aspects that are equally important to children. Even though they may not be able to see their friends in person, they can still see them through video chats, and parents should encourage that through more than simple texts or social media.
Talk to other parents and try to work out regular times for your kids to interact. It’s the 21st-century pandemic version of a playdate!
While this may not be a vacation for anyone, you still have to have fun at home with your kids. In today’s world, having this much one-on-one time with your children is a rarity. Embrace it as much as you can and seize this opportunity to build a stronger bond with your kids. Think about organizing a family games tournament, have a water balloon fight, do a family-friendly workout, or take regular exploratory walks together. This can be a great time to build memories as you work to build their minds as well.
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