Back to School 2021: Tips To Help Your Kids Adjust to The New School Year
After the challenges of last year kids and teens are finally getting back to school. The start of the new school year can be an anxious time for the whole family even during a “normal” school year, but even more so after the lockdowns. Here are some tips to consider as you get your children ready to transition back to in-person instruction.
What to expect when returning to school this Autumn?
First of all, it is important to understand that things might not be as smooth as before. For kids and teens the return might be awkward. Social norms might not be what they were as certain restrictions such as masking and physical distancing measures will likely be put in place in the interest of public health.
Upon return students might find that it is a lot harder for them to focus than it used to be. It’s only normal. Most have gotten used to attending school from the comfort of their homes, and reentering a vibrant school environment could be a little more than distracting.
One thing’s for sure, the return for the 2021-2022 school year will be everything but normal. Remember, that there’s a real possibility that remote learning will make a comeback. So, without further ado, here are a few things you can do to make the transition for your kids smoother.
For kids and teens the past year and a half has been chaotic and difficult in all sorts of ways. Communication in times like these is key. Speak with your offspring openly. Don’t lie, and let them know that this school year will be different, that it will be challenging. Hear them out, take their questions and concerns seriously, acknowledge that it is a difficult time, and let them know that you are there for them.
Familiarize yourself and your kids with any new school rules
Find out whatever new rules your child’s school has in place. It might be that masks will be mandatory, classrooms may contain fewer students, desks could be spaced-apart, schedules could be more strict. Familiarize yourself with everything and go over all those rules with your kids before the first day of school, so they’re not caught by surprise.
Establish and stick to a steady routine
Throughout last year most kids and teens have got used to a life with much less structure. It’s a natural consequence of remote learning. However, with the new school year, a steady routine should make a comeback.
Consider establishing a bedtime and morning routine. This will help them get the much needed rest and stick to a routine that they were more used to before the pandemic.
The lockdowns resulted in a steep increase in the amount of time everyone – including kids and teens – spent in front of screens. Now, however, your kids will be once again seeing and socializing with their friends in real-life situations; thus, consider imposing limits on your offspring’s screen-time, especially around bedtime.
In this difficult time when we are returning to life after lockdowns, try to remain positive and reassuring, even if you’re feeling anxious yourself. Stay focused on your offspring’s experience. Make them excited about things returning to normal, about seeing their friends and teachers again. Seeing things in a positive light will help them ease back into their school environment.
Remote learning might come back: be prepared
The times are uncertain. While it might seem that everything is getting back to normal, understand that there’s a possibility that the lockdowns will make a comeback. Discuss this possibility with your kids and try to prepare for that together.
Here are a few essential digital tools that can make remote learning a whole lot easier and safer.
The life of a student can be busy and tricky juggling a class schedule, tests, assignments, and other responsibilities especially in a remote setting. myHomework is a digital student planner designed to track homework assignments, tests, and more. In case remote learning is once again the norm, consider equipping your kids with myHomework. It should help them navigate their schedule and keep up with the daily routines.
Kids Academy is an award winning app that engages students through adaptive technology, artificial intelligence, and gamification. It is an excellent platform that provides students with a variety of engaging content such as games, quizzes, songs, books, videos, and much more. The app tracks the student’s progress and provides reports that can be looked at by teachers or parents to determine areas of improvement.
Distractions in a remote learning environment are more common than we’d like them to be. This is where the Forest app comes in handy. It is a productivity app designed to help you and your kids stay focused. Essentially, it is a timer app that incentivizes the user to stay on task. When you start a session (you can decide how long the session will last) the app plants a seed which grows as time goes by. If you don’t exit the app at that time, the seeds grow into a full tree; however, if you exit the app, well, the tree is dead. The point is to grow as large a forest as possible. This engaging factor might be just what your kids need to help them stay focused and engaged throughout remote learning sessions.
Online learning comes with online security concerns. While your kids need the internet to access their learning materials, you must be aware that its use does not come without its risks and those risks could affect the whole family.
Passwords are our first line of defense when it comes to digital security. During remote learning your kids will need to log into a whole bunch of different websites and accounts for their school work. Securing those accounts with strong passwords is essential. This is where a password manager such as NordPass could be of great help. It allows you to safely store all your passwords in a single place and access them whenever you need. NordPass is designed with ease-of-use in mind making it a perfect password security tool even for kids and teens.