Due to the risk of COVID-19, the US government made a transformative, yet necessary decision to close schools across the country and switch to distance learning. Parents across the country are now faced with the sudden challenge of keeping their children occupied at home and looking for some survival tips.
Trust me as I know, my kids have now been home and been distance learning for the past few weeks as I live in NY, which is the apparent epicenter of this deadly virus. So, we are becoming well-versed in something we never dreamed of or imagined possible only a few short months ago.
We also had to learn trial by fire here as this occurrence was now pretty much thrust upon us overnight. Slowly we are getting there. But I still think we are a work in progress during these crazy times. However, I would like to share what has helped us thus far to help other families coping with similar now.
So here are some encouraging and sure-fire tips for all parents to help them during this challenging time:
1. Maintain Structure & Normalcy.
Implement procedures that maintain the normalcy of operations as much as possible, keeping a structured routine throughout the day. This is probably the most important to keep your kids on track and ensure your sanity.
2. Set aside specific times for activities.
This time includes reading time, watching educational videos, playing educational games, and lessons that teachers have provided. But not all of this structure has to revolve around classroom education. Take time to teach your kids how to eat healthily and make their lunch, build something, paint pictures, go for a hike/walk, or practice an instrument if available. Take advantage of opportunities that you normally would not have time for and cherish these teachable moments.
3. Eliminate Hysteria & Hype.
Fear and panic are detrimental distractions, especially in the minds of young children who are the most vulnerable with ever-evolving brains. A parent’s anxiety fuels or otherwise reinforces his or her kid’s own fears, yet this state of hysteria surrounding Coronavirus can be damaging towards a child’s education, experiences, and purpose. Children should be educated and up to date on the current situation but monitor the intake of information and make sure it comes from trusted factual sources.