Getting past the challenges of online learning

Closing schools because of the COVID-19 pandemic meant every student suddenly switched to online education. The transition has not been easy for everyone. No matter your feelings about the situation, it is likely that some form of e-learning will be with us for a long time. 

As a parent, you want to support your children, but you may not know how. American Heritage School provides five ways to help your child thrive academically, even during a pandemic.

1. Structure your day

School days are highly structured as far as when classes are held and how long they last. Students are used to receiving an assignment with clear instructions. Online schooling can be a challenge for some students because of the lack of structure and personalized attention.

It may not be possible to mimic an actual school day at home, but you can develop a basic routine that works for your family.

Start the day by going over the assignments and determine how much time each class and assignment will take. It is a good idea to involve your child’s teachers so they can provide guidelines for planning and prioritizing everything.

Then create a daily schedule or calendar and post it where your child will be working. Some children work better with checklists, while others do better with something more visual.

As you plan the days and week, remember to leave room for breaks and lunch. If you have a younger child or a child with a short attention span, plan to take them outside and play a few times during the day.

2. Create a dedicated workspace

Set up a place that is dedicated to schoolwork. Having a workstation will help your child get in the right frame of mind for learning.

The type of workspace depends on your child’s personality and learning style. Some kids need absolute quiet to concentrate. Others enjoy having music playing in the background while they work.

Some children are independent and can get work done on their own, so an out-of-the-way workstation might work well for them. Some children require supervision to stay on task. In this case, putting the workstation in the kitchen or living room would be better.

Then make sure your child has the tools he or she needs to get work done. There is no way to get around the need for a computer or tablet. Internet access, a wireless mouse, headphones, paper, pencils or pens, and other office supplies might also be needed.

3. Learn more about online learning platforms

Some schools are using online platforms to give out assignments. Students can also upload completed work to the platform. They might also be using video/communication software like Zoom.

The most sophisticated video conferencing tools allow teachers to conduct virtual classrooms in real-time. They can even upload documents to be viewed on the screen.

You will have to become familiar with these tools, so you can help your child. Some online learning platforms also have parental portals that will allow you to keep track of assignments, check grades, monitor your child’s progress, and communicate with teachers.

4. Keep the lines of communication open

Learning online does not mean your child is stuck learning independently. Teachers are still critical to the learning process. Communication is key, especially when your child cannot meet face-to-face with teachers and other classmates.

Stay in touch with your child’s teachers as best as you can. Be sure you know the expectations and what you can do to help your child succeed.

Your child’s school might set guidelines for teachers and students to follow. These guidelines often include how often live video sessions should occur, when and how long they will be, and how often your child should check in to report progress.

5. Reward a job well done

There is a reason teachers give out gold stars and prizes. These are great ways to recognize and reward achievements. Share and celebrate successes such as completing all assignments on time or getting a good grade on a test.

Praise for a job well done can go a long way to encouraging your child to keep going.

Tutoring at American Heritage School

Your child may need extra help to avoid falling behind due to Covid-19. The American Academy is offering a specialized Tutoring Program for Lower, Middle, and High School students.

Subject areas include:

  • Art
  • Computer
  • English
  • Foreign Language
  • Mathematics
  • Physical Education
  • Pre-Professional
  • Science 
  • Social Studies

Join The American Academy Program

The American Academy Program – a college preparatory school for students with mild learning differences - was created to help students who struggle with learning disorders.

Our small classroom setting allows students to receive more individual attention. Together with experts and teachers, we can ensure that your child is taught methods that will help him or her do well in school.

To learn more about The American Academy program and how we can support your child's academic success please contact us directly.