How to Create a Positive Learning Environment at Home
With many students suddenly attending school remotely, it can be challenging for both kids and parents to adjust to focusing on education at home. So, how do you create a positive learning environment at home? Here are some ideas:
Start the Day With Movement
Schedule a physical education “class” as soon as you get up in the morning. Go for a walk or do some yoga and light stretching. Exercise has the unique ability to help wake us up and put us in a state of mind to focus better. Studies have shown that exercise also can help reduce stress and anxiety, something that is beneficial for the whole family. Mornings are also a great time to do a meditation practice, which is great for children to start at a young age. For tips on different types and benefits of meditation, read our article here.
Think Positively About The Day’s Tasks Before They Start
Getting used to staying home more and attending school (and work) remotely is a big change, and it’s important to be gentle with ourselves. One way to have a better day is to think about it positively before it starts — talk to your child about their class schedule and ask them to name one good thing about each class. This will help them look forward to their obligations rather than dreading them. This is also a great practice for adults to help get in a good mindset before starting a workday!
Give Your Kids Choices As Much As Possible
While you may not have much control over your child’s school schedule, giving them choices whenever possible can help them feel more in control of an abnormal situation. It could be anything from which chair they sit on during classes that day, to what they wear, lunch selection, or what activity they do after school.
Arrange Virtual Playdates
Part of the joy of attending school in person is getting to visit with friends and develop social skills. Coordinate with other parents to set up virtual playdays over video conference software — depending on your child’s age the dates may involve playing games online, baking something “together” and sharing their creations, watching a movie together, or just saying hello. Even if the playdate is short, it will help children feel connected and that will carry over into their class time.
Have a Dedicated Space for Learning
Creating a special space for school can be challenging, especially in smaller homes, or where most space is shared. The important thing is to try and keep areas where children normally relax safe from stress. For example, while your child may attend classes on a computer set up on a table in their bedroom, that’s better than doing it on the bed itself, where they may start to think of that area negatively and have it affect their ability to relax or sleep. For more tips on upgrading your space for home learning, check out this article.
Adjusting to new routines is often challenging but with patience and time, your home can be a positive environment perfect for learning!