We are living in extraordinary times where the things that we took for granted at the beginning of the year have now all but disappeared.
For parents and teachers alike, a school closure is far from an ideal scenario. Keeping calm and avoiding stress in this unusual situation helps to not only keep the mind healthy but the body healthy too, so we have spoken to an experienced teacher and tutor on how to approach learning from home with the maximum results but the minimum of stress.
“The first thing to remember is that everybody was put in the situation at short notice so the time to prepare was minimal. As a result, everybody is on an unprecedented learning curve, with adjusting to technology seemingly having to happen in a finger click. Our schools are individually run despite them having a set curriculum to follow so it is inevitable that there is a deep variation in both the standard and amount of work it is getting sent home. This means that you have some children almost having a timetable like at school whereas others have a pile of papers to work through more at their leisure.
It is impossible to take into account people’s home lives and the situations they now find themselves in. They may be having to work at home and under far more pressure than ever, responsible for the care of others outside the home so having to run errands or, indeed, poorly themselves. All this means that there simply cannot be a set expectation about what children are expected to do. And of course, the relationship between parent and child means that suddenly making a parent an educator blurs those lines dramatically.
My advice after many years in and around education is that don’t believe for one second that your child receives six hours of solid learning a day. With distractions, other activities and waiting for the teacher to help, in essence the school day based on learning is around the two-hour mark. If you can achieve 2 hours solid learning at home with a primary focus on Maths and English, then you are giving your child focused, individual support that is invaluable in this period. This is not necessarily about what they do, but about keeping them in the habit of learning.”