Due to COVID-19, it has become difficult for the authorities to decide whether schools should reopen or if remote learning should continue until such time that the risk of infection is improved. The looming confusion and debate can prove especially challenging for families with special needs children. School psychologists are also aware of the problems that parents face due to ongoing homeschooling. To help you cope with this situation, they have recommended a few wellness-induced design ideas for your home. Psychologists believe that if you modify your living space a bit, it can be useful for you, your children, and the entire family. Let’s take a quick look at the suggestions.
Ram Duriseti: How to make your home learning-friendly for everyone’s convenience?
Creating a designated space
No matter what age your child is, they need a dedicated learning space. This will be convenient for you as well. When children know where they have to study, you won’t have to worry about the small details, such as, setting up their computers or finding their school supplies, and they can immediately focus on their school assignments. With a designated space, a structured routine will be easy to follow too.
In Ram Duriseti’sexperience, if you have young children, it is better to create a learning space that is easily accessible and can be monitored by you (i.e., near the kitchen or your work desk). Many parents feel that a designated learning space helps both them and their kids. Dedicated learning spaces are also essential if you have more than one child.
If the child is a teenager, you will have to find out their preference. Teens usually like to be in their bedrooms, but you can work with your teen to decide where would be the best place in the home to learn. Your son or daughter may prefer his or her own peaceful space to learn.
Introducing a supportive learning environment
Social distancing and self-isolation rules are weighing heavy on young kids and teens alike. Since they cannot meet their friends or peer groups, they can feel lonely, anxious, unmotivated, and sad. Such conditions may continue until this pandemic ends. To help your child deal with all their emotions and stress, you may need to make their learning environment more comfortable and provide an ambiance that suits their particular needs. If they are “hyper”, for example, they will react to sensory stimuli more. You have to control for elements that can agitate or interfere with their learning needs and responsibilities. As a general rule, controlling distractions will be a constant and ongoing challenge.
At the same time, you may consider adding soothing lighting and smells that they enjoy. In essence, anything that makes your kids feel comfortable and calm can be wise to introduce in their learning space in order to encourage them to concentrate on their schoolwork and decrease their susceptibility to distractions.
Lastly, there has to be sufficient space in the room for their movement. Children will have to spend a lot of time looking at a screen because of the online classes. This may affect their mental and physical wellness. Thus, giving them time to move around the available space and maintain physical activity is critical.
Just remember, these are only a few suggestions you can experiment with and the authors understand not all families are fortunate enough to have the space and resources to facilitate the above suggestions. You may be able to contact your child’s school district or your municipalities education department to obtain resources that you may not be aware of (i.e., chrome books or tablets, WiFi hotspots, school sponsored meals).