Parenting during a Pandemic....

I'm back! I hope you enjoyed my first blog post. The feedback I received was great. If you haven't read it, please check it out after you read this one.

It seems like the entire world has shifted due to COVID-19. To be completely honest, I am OVER IT! Wearing masks, staying home, not seeing friends and family, not attending weekly worship services... It has been a lot. However, this is where we are and no matter what, we must trust God. It's one thing to be an adult and experience this, but I could not imagine being a student during this terrible time, let alone a parent. Over the last month I have had an opportunity to converse with a few of my friends who are parents as well as those that work in the school system about the effects of COVID-19.

For many parents this is the first time in a long time that they have had to be with there children all day long. They have become full-time teachers overnight in addition to working their full-time jobs as well. This is an adjustment to their entire lifestyle as a family. Many of the parents that I surveyed about teaching their children stated that Math has been the most challenging subject. Everything about Math is different from when we were in school. It's not as simple as carrying over the 1 or inserting 0. LOL. Today's math is geared towards helping students become critical thinkers, but now the parents are confused and somewhat frustrated because they don't understand the work.

I recently sat down with my friend Charlene Nevett who currently works as a Dean for a Charter School to discuss how parents can overcome the challenges of remote learning. She also serves as the Youth Pastor at her local church. Charlene navigates through various classrooms remotely to monitor the participation and behavior of the students in the virtual classroom. From 7am - 4pm she is able to see how their attention span changes throughout the day as well as identifying the effects of this remote learning on each student individually. With her experience and my research we developed a few helpful tips for parents that are now teaching their children from home.

Tips for the Teacher at Home:

1. Identify the learning style of your child. There are 3 learning styles: Auditory, Kinesthetic, and Tactile. Some children reflect both or all 3 which means they have a blended style of learning.

2. Create a regimen or schedule. Stick with schedule! It's important to still treat the day like a normal school day. Set times for breakfast, lunch, snack time, recess, etc.

3. Research the classwork/homework assigned. It is okay that you don't understand the work assigned to your child, but researching the homework will help you. Use this as an opportunity to learn with your child.

4. Create conversation and foster the relationship with your child. This is the perfect time for parents to build a closer bond with their children. Having conversations with your children about current events, their feelings, etc. will help enhance their social skills. This is important because most of their time is now being spent on a computer for schoolwork as well as cell phones and tablets for leisure.

5. Don't just limit the work to what the teacher has assigned. Read a book together, watch a movie or educational video, add additional spelling words, etc. Go the extra mile!

6. Reach out to your child's school counselor. Remember they are there to support you. Use your resources.

I hope this was helpful. Thank you so much to my friends that were willing to share their personal experiences and feelings about teaching their children.

Thank you, Dean Charlene Nevett for your insight and willingness to share. I pray this information is helpful to everyone that reads this article.

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