2020 will go down as one of the most challenging years for learning, as there have been so many interruptions.
Learners have had to adjust to being home-schooled and the new normal that COVID-19 has brought into our lives.
They had to endure not seeing their teachers, friends and not socialising with other kids. Despite all this, they had to keep up with their school work.
And for this, we applaud them!
How to make weekend learning effective
As the year draws to an end, many children are looking forward to finishing their academic year.
SPARK Carlswald Assistant Principal, Preshina Sankar, shares five tips on how you can help your child finish the year strong.
1. Plan a routine together
Develop a routine that will work for both you and your child. Use everyday activities as learning opportunities for your children. It is also essential to be flexible with your routine so that it can fully benefit your child. Switch up activities if required. Remember that if your child is restless, they won’t get that much learning done anyway, so be flexible.
2. Have open conversations
Please encourage your children to ask questions and express their feelings with you. Remember that your child may have different reactions to stress, so be patient and understanding. Start by inviting your child to talk about the issue. Make sure you are in a safe environment and allow your child to speak freely. Drawing, stories and other activities may help to open a discussion.
Try not to minimise or avoid their concerns. Be sure to acknowledge their feelings and assure them that it’s natural to feel scared about these things. Demonstrate that you’re listening by giving them your full attention, and make sure they understand that they can talk to you and their teachers whenever they like.
3. Take your time
Start with shorter learning sessions and make them progressively longer. If the goal is to have a 30- or 45-minute session, start with 10 minutes and build up from there. Within a session, combine online or screen time with offline activities or exercises.
4. Protect children online
Digital platforms provide an opportunity for children to keep learning, take part in play and stay in touch with their friends. But increased access online brings heightened risks for children’s safety, protection and privacy. Discuss the internet with your children to know how it works, what they need to be aware of, and what appropriate behaviour looks like on the platforms they use, such as video calls. Establish rules together about how, when and where they can use the internet.
5. Stay in touch with your children’s education facility
Stay in touch with your children’s teacher or school to stay informed, ask questions and get more guidance. Parent groups or community groups can also be an excellent way to support each other with your homeschooling. Reach out to your child’s teacher to ensure that you are providing your child with age-appropriate activities.