There’s a lot going on around the world at the moment. No country has escaped the clutches of the deadly virus, and it has derailed the normalcy that we used to enjoy. We are social animals and need the presence of others in our lives to keep us going, that’s a fact. If the bizarre events have affected adults drastically, imagine what children are going through! In this short article, we’ll discuss a major change – remote learning. Here’s a look into the common problems, and how they can be approached.
There are quite a few changes and challenges that have been thrust upon kids. It can be difficult for them to come to terms with these changes since they were brought about suddenly, leaving very little time to adjust.
The speed at which the virus spread and only some information available, there was no choice but to adopt those measures almost overnight.
These include total isolation – from family members living in different households to friends, playing outside in parks, and shifting of learning completely from schools to homes.
It is essential that children during their growing years partake in social interactions to build their characters, strike new relationships with kids of their age, and develop their skills by exploring. This has come to a full stop since the past year.
The psychosocial effects of these substitutions on children are being studied very closely and a rise in mental health issues has been observed among children during this period. There have also been increasing incidences of stress, physical problems, and an unhealthy dependence on social media. It has been found that inequalities exist between children belonging to different economical strata as well.
But the most striking change has been the shift from classroom learning to remote learning (from home).
Remote learning and its challenges
Remote learning means engaging in activities and learning from home as opposed to studying in a classroom environment or school. This means that classes are taken over the internet using various platforms.
Teachers may be inadequately prepared to switch to taking classes online since such a situation hasn’t arisen before. There is a lack of proper structure and children may also find it difficult to adapt to sitting and concentrating for long hours in front of screens without their attention being diverted.
There are differences between those children who have easy access to the internet to those who do not. Kids from lower-income households will be burdened with additional expenditure and the child may feel left out and lose his opportunity at learning. When it goes on for a long time (like it has now), this can have a considerable disparity of education.
Interacting with peers and socializing with kids of similar ages have a positive effect on the development of a child. There is no physical rapport during remote learning and this can be detrimental.
Even if the restrictions are lifted and students return to school, the transition will be difficult, and they will need to get accustomed to the safety measures like wearing masks and keeping a safe distance from others.
How can we make it easier for the kids?
If you have school-going children, you can relate to the above-mentioned challenges. So here are a few things you could consider for helping them during these shifts.
- Parents and teachers have equal importance here. One method would be for you to have discussions with your child’s teachers and come up with a structured “virtual” curriculum that incorporates easier lessons while starting. Classes with shorter duration can be tried in the beginning to help the children acclimatize to the new form.
- Arranging feedback sessions regularly with the child will give an insight into his difficulties better. You can then formulate plans to rectify them.
- Let them continue their daily schedule, just like when they were going to school. This will keep their minds in a routine and keep them energized.
- Encourage them to celebrate festivals and birthdays, dress up for occasions, and participate together with classmates, albeit virtually.
- Do not intrude during their classes. Sometimes, as parents, you may feel like listening to classes and have the urge to correct their mistakes. Avoid that and let them have a quiet and focused session with their teachers.
Remote learning poses unique challenges and is tough to adapt to. But kids are always eager to learn new things and you just have to give them a gentle nudge in the right direction!