Let’s face it, distance learning is going to be hard! Most parents are not teachers themselves and have other commitments too. One thing you can do to support your child is help them to set up a good working space.
My tip, get your child involved! Ask them to draw up a plan for their workspace and create some ownership of the space. Involve your child in where they think this space should be and what they might need.
1. The Space:
First thing to consider is your child’s preferred way of learning.
- Does he/she need a quiet space because they are easily distracted or would a corner in a family space be more suitable as he/she likes to know there are other people around?
- Does your child require a powerpoint for a laptop/iPad?
Also consider that your child will require a clean and inviting working space with a comfortable and supportive chair. They would have a space to store their books and stationary and an opportunity for daylight and fresh air, just the same as us adults. Make the space bright and inviting, don’t make the mistake of adding lots of colour and ‘things’ as it only leads to distraction.
2. What Do You Need On The Desk:
- Pens, pencils, textas/markers, ruler, post-it notes etc.
- Looseleaf white and coloured paper
- Jars/tubs for stationary storage
- Paper tray for paper, notebooks
- Calendar recording due dates
For younger children, consider a ‘desk buddy’ as distance learning is going to be challenging. This desk buddy could be a stuffed animal who stays at the work space to comfort your child or help him/her when they get stuck on a tricky problem.
3. Create A Sense Of Ownership:
Ensure that your child understands the importance of keeping their workspace clean and organised. Just like at school, everything should have a place and should be returned to it when it is no longer in use.
4. Personalise The Space Based On Their Interests:
If your child is a big fan of a particular sport, colour or other special interest, let them add a few elements to their workspace to represent this. Just don’t make the mistake of over filling the space and cluttering it with distractions.
5. Don’t Forget to Keep Hydrated and Encourage Breaks
While it is important to create an engaging workspace, don’t forget to ensure that your child is well hydrated and is encouraged to leave the from time to time. Breaks are important, whether it’s a 5minute break to kick around the footy or a lunch break. It is so important to be active.