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Struggling with Distance Learning? Consider these 10 tips

Struggling with Distance Learning? Consider these 10 tips

Most of us were new to distance learning when schools closed in the spring and because the concept was simply an interim fix, it felt chaotic for many parents, kids and teachers. This fall, many families are doing distance learning (either by choice or because it's what their school is offering), once again bringing up feelings of fear, confusion and/or disappointment. Still, there are tips that can help ease the transition into distance learning! We've gathered some of the best to help you adjust this year:

1. Use online resources instead of bombarding teachers with questions. There are endless apps, videos and websites—like Crash Course videos, Quizlet’s study app and even the Library of Congress website—that can help you study, research or complete homework.

2. Dedicate a specific study space and keep supplies stocked. Searching for highlighters and a pencil sharpener can slow down learning and doing homework on the couch in the family room may post distractions.

3. Ensure your child knows how to log in, navigate the learning platform and find online resources. You may want to bookmark frequently uses websites for easy access.

4. Review the syllabus before you get started. Note deadlines for projects and assignments on a calendar that’s visible to the student to help avoid procrastination and surprises.

5. Communicate with teachers if you have questions, plan to go on vacation or your student is sick. Most schools will be accommodating.

6. Encourage your student to take advantage of office hours. This time will give your child a chance to ask questions, get clarification and seek individualized support.

7. Schedule regular breaks. Younger children need more frequent breaks. Encourage them to use the time to use the bathroom, eat a brain-fueling snack, stretch or sit outside for a few minutes.

8. Use the parent resources offered. If your school offers virtual support meetings for parents, attends as many as you can to better understand the platform, resources and tools.

9. Update any IEPs to reflect distance learning. If your student has a 504 Plan or Individualized Education Program, it may need to be modified or even postponed until in-school teaching resumes.

10. Don’t aim to replicate your student’s in-school learning experience. Distance learning will be different and you’ll have to create something that works into your lifestyle, schedule and environment.