Tips for Distance Learning in Junior School

Distance Learning can be a challenging time for families.

As parents, you are not expected to be full-time teachers. You are there to provide support and encouragement.  It is a different way of working for students and balancing interactions with live content and working at own pace is complex.

Every boy is on a different learning journey and some may require explicit teaching of strategies to reach the intended outcomes. Discuss this with your son’s teacher so together you can plan and make the learning experiences successful and enjoyable.

What is good learning?
Good learning requires persistence and resilience. In order to accomplish goals, students need to approach their learning with a positive mindset. This is not always easy, especially when faced with challenges or changes to their routines. 

Parents play a huge role in teaching their sons to think positively. Consider how you model your attitude as your son is always watching your reactions.  Help him visualise positive outcomes to set him up for success. Encourage him to avoid negative dialogue. Together you can reach a solution.

How can you help?
Here are some tips for you to help manage distance learning.

Set up the day 
Ask your son if he can locate his timetable. What is the plan for the day? What resources does he need? Does he need support from his teacher?

Provide a productive workspace
As well, it may be helpful to use a timer to help him schedule his time to complete tasks.

Schedule breaks 
Younger children have short attention spans and can drift or be distracted quickly. Schedule breaks throughout the day to ensure that your son has breaks away from screens. If the work is not completed, it can be done later or just leave it.

Manage screen time
It is important that all children are monitored and using the websites that have been assigned by their teachers.

Afternoon check-ins
In the afternoon, the following questions can be useful check-ins: What went well today? Do you need to ask your teacher for something? Do you need help with something to make tomorrow more successful?

Set goals
When given feedback from the teacher, help your boy to set targets and plan the next steps.

Off-screen time
Scheduling off-screen time is equally as important. Read with your son or encourage daily reading.

Prioritise wellbeing
The wellbeing of you and your son is the utmost priority. Check in with him to see if he is okay. If he needs help, contact the teacher or our experienced counsellors.

Celebrate success
Don’t forget to acknowledge your son’s everyday successes, to encourage his progress and growth.

These are challenging times and we are all learning and adapting together. Be kind to yourself and your boy and if the work is not done, that’s okay. He is doing the best he can. Remember the school is working in partnership with you so you are not alone.

Joanne Davies
Teaching and Learning Coordinator, Junior School