As a former teacher, I feel sorry for teachers right now. It seems crazy what they are being asked to do. Some kids distance learning, others in person, and some in between. How do you teach and monitor kids in so many different locations? I’ve seen so many teachers go above and beyond what is required. This is a difficult time for all educators.
Knowing what educational learning will be best for your children can be a challenge. What should you do? What will be best for your kids? No matter what you do there is some risk involved. I’d recommend starting with prayer first for guidance to know what is best for your family. Research each option, then make a decision and go forward with it. Your decision may be very different then everyone else but that is okay. Remember that your family is the most important thing and keep that as your focus!
I have heard several reasons for choosing to do in-person instruction at school or to keep your kids at home and do teacher delivered distance learning. Here are a few reasons for each side of the coin. Hopefully this will help you make your decision. Consider the risks and the benefits of each one.
Kids should attend school…
- Does your child have anxiety about missing friends, teachers, sports, and all of the social aspects of school?
- My child doesn’t have issues with the mask.
- The districts and principals are working hard to make the schools safer. I have heard so many assurances…sanitizing stations, physical distance in classrooms, all doors propped open, one way on stairs, temperatures, all sick kids are sent home, etc.
- What is your child’s learning style? My kids definitely feel like they learn better in the classroom.
- Do you work full-time? There isn’t someone home to watch and help the kids with their school work.
- Your child isn’t self motivated.
- Our district is very flexible so if you decide that going to school isn’t working out, you can change later.
- There will be less kids at school this year. I’ve heard 30-50% are staying home.
- Sick kids will be sent home. How nice if this had always been the rule! I can still remember being in the classroom with kids coughing so bad and obviously so sick!
- You (or your kids) couldn’t handle at-home-learning and were unsuccessful in the Spring.
- Do your kids have a hard time focusing on Zoom. I know I am so distracted at home.
Here are some reasons to choose at-home-learning.
- Your child suffers from anxiety about going back to school.
- Your child was very successful with at-home-learning. (Just a note: that many teachers were very lenient during the Spring and many of the assignments were easier than usual). I’m assuming the curriculum will be a little more challenging this Fall.
- You have a high-risk family member.
- Your child has asthma or another health concern.
- Consider the learning style of your child. Some kids are much more motivated online and can be self motivated to work quickly.
- Will an adult be home to help your child? I heard of many kids that had to babysit instead of doing school work during the pandemic.
No matter which option you choose, discuss proper hygiene with your child to help keep them safe and healthy.
- Wash hands frequently. I really like foaming hand soap. It washes off easier. Teach your child how and when to wash their hands.
- Wear a clean mask anytime you leave the house. I’ve made enough masks for all of us to wear a clean one every day for a week. That way we can put them in the hamper after each use. Here is the mask pattern that I used. I made them just a little bit smaller than the adult male size and it gives my nose/mouth extra room to breathe.
- Teach your kids the proper way to wear a mask (it should cover the nose and mouth) and to touch them as little as possible. If they wear glasses, I read that you can put a line of hot glue on the inside of the mask and it helps prevent slipping and foggy glasses.
- Shower regularly. My kids shower every night before bed. I like to shower after shopping or going out. Better safe and clean!
- Teach your kids what a “safe” distance is from others. I’ve found so many people don’t know how to stay 6 feet away and I have to distance myself even further from them. Practice with your kids so they know what 6 feet actually looks like.
- Don’t share drinks or use the same utensils. This is a quick way to spread germs.
- Keep sanitizer close by. We sanitize our hands after we go into any location before driving away. Here are some cute ones for school.
- Have them bring their own water bottle for school. Most drinking fountains are closed.
- Encourage them to touch as little as possible. Handles, doors, elevator knobs we try to use elbows or other body parts if needed.
The nice thing about this school year is that most schools are giving several options and allowing more opportunities to change your mind midyear. Talk with your school administration if you have any concerns. They can help you understand how the year will look. Good luck in your decision making! I know that you are trying to do what is best for your kids and they will be successful, whatever decision you choose.
***This post does contain some affiliate links.***