Get ready for the school day
If you haven’t already, help your child create an in-home, mini-school classroom. Create a designated, distraction-free area (even if it’s a corner of the dining room table). Having this space will help foster learning, curiosity, and creativity.
Encourage your child’s independence
While the class might be in your living room, the goal is to support your child in navigating online learning independently. Like in-person school, the students are encouraged to problem-solve, take risks, and advocate for themselves.
Remember– it’s their time to connect with their teacher and fellow students, just like they were in their classroom. Check on them, but give them and their class space to learn. They’ve got this!
The virtual school involves integrating your child’s academic schedule with your family’s routine. The Ministry of Education mandates the amount of time a child should be engaged in learning activities.
Have a chat with your child and other family members to explain your expectations for the day. Don’t expect your child to be online the entire time. Take opportunities when you can to have your child work offline.
Communicate with your teacher
Remember that you are an important partner in your child’s education with their teachers. Two-way communication is essential to your child’s success. If you would like to communicate with them, set up an appointment outside of class hours. As is the case with in-person school, online class time is meant for your child to explore and learn.
If you have any concerns, please speak with your teacher directly. Posting or venting on social media isn’t productive and can result in miscommunication or even false information.
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Take breaks (and deep breaths) if needed
Encourage your child to take advantage of their scheduled breaks to incorporate some exercise, just like they would during recess. Movement has many benefits for kids, especially when it comes to learning. It can help improve focus, thinking and problem-solving. Take time for a snack or a friendly chat.
Remember, while your child is taking a break, your child’s teacher uses that time to plan, assess, help with supervision duty at their home-school, or support other classes.
Be patient, kind and flexible
Virtual learning is a new experience for many parents, students, and teachers. We all need to work together to make this upcoming school year a success. To do that we need to be patient and kind to each other, and with ourselves.
Although we strive to create a consistent schedule, plans will shift. We are all navigating it the best we can.
Please be kind to your child’s teacher. Your child’s well-being and academic success is their primary focus. Your patience will allow them to become better virtual educators, and it will foster innovation so all students can realize their full potential.