The challenges of COVID-19 are once again changing the lives of our children in very dramatic ways as schools across the country are opening their doors for in person learning. What that can look like has more options than a Dunkin’ Donuts case of goodies.
Many schools are offering a variety of instructional models that are once again requiring our children, teachers and parents to expand their idea of what school looks like. Do you choose in person or virtual? Is in person every day or a partial week? Is virtual part of the in person experience?
If you choose virtual will it be with a teacher who now has an actual physical class with them? How will that differ from full virtual? Will the teacher move around the room to assist those children sitting in front of them and become invisible to the student on the virtual setting? Will the child asking a question in the physical classroom be heard by the student sitting at home?
Many of my clients tell me their children were reluctant to ask questions when all children were in the virtual setting. Will that continue to be a hindrance with the dual option?
If someone in your home is diagnosed with Covid does your child need to go from in person to virtual learning? Do they then return after the all safe is declared? Will they be able to understand that they are staying home not because they are ill but because someone they live with is? How may that in and out affect your child? The class as a whole? Will higher absentee rates and perhaps longer absences affect the flow of instruction?
Physical health concerns will be a factor for the child attending a brick and mortar setting. However, the child at home, may have to deal with an increased sense of social isolation as they observe their friends from a distance. They are not part of the lunch and recess activities - which in reality schools are putting extra effort into as they provide safe structure for the students who are physically present.
The change from new norm to new norm is stressful enough for adults to manage let alone our children. It is important to monitor our children closely during these changeable times. They hear so much from parents and other children. Every person has a unique perspective on the ‘right’ way to approach these times. It is important for we adults to strive for understanding and provide reassurance of safety for our children.
As our children move out into the bigger world their understanding of what is best is going to be challenged. This goes far beyond the stressors of the classroom yet impacts them in the classroom and beyond.
I do not have answers to these or any of the other questions that will arise from the limited opening of schools. Reassuring your child of their safety is a priority. Answering their questions is a must. Monitoring changes in behavior and talking with their teacher can not be overlooked.
These are yet again uncharted waters. We need to be kind to all involved. The questions I offered above are questions I am sure teachers and parents across the country are asking themselves as their students are both in person and virtual. They may assist you in opening up necessary conversations should the need arise.
Have a question or concern? Reach out today at 215-932-1702 or firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to help you.