Feeling worried about your child’s education?
As a parent it can be a little concerning to see your kids spending so much time on the screen. How can you be sure if they’re working or just playing games? It’s normal to be concerned about these changes. Online school is a completely different situation when it comes to absorbing information, mainly because the computer provides more opportunities for
exciting distractions. Your student could have one window up for homework and several other windows open for; messaging friends, playing games, Facebook, shopping, ect. If you can get your student to engage with note taking while their learning, then it is a win-win for everyone. Here are 11 ways to help your students take notes while they’re learning online.
11 Tips to help you learn online:
- Don’t be a victim of your own chaos. There’s a saying that a messy room is a messy mind. This principal can be directly applied to your online learning environment. Take time to clear your desk of unnecessary items.
- Clean your screen. Your computer is now your learning environment. Analyze your computer screen, are there many tabs/windows open that you don’t need? Is your desktop cluttered with pictures? Try creating 3 folders that you can put documents into so that you have a fresh space to work.
- One subject at a time. Set yourself up for success by not having every single notebook, binder and textbook in your workspace. Use your backpack ( even at home!) to store the other materials that you are not immediately working on.
- Create a color coding system. Each class can be a color of your choice (even the color of your pen can coordinate with the class your taking notes for)
- Use a planner. Itemize each task you need to accomplish for the day (or even a few days in advance), so that when you open your planner you can easily check things off without feeling overwhelmed.
- Listen with a pen in your hand. At home in the comfort of your own room there will be many things to distract you. Become an active listener and be alert to the main ideas of the online lecture so that you can make connections while you hear them.
- Don’t waste your time with full sentences. When you’re taking notes use abbreviations and leave white spaces for later additions.
- Identify your goals. What are the objectives or goals for what you’re learning? Are you taking notes on a lecture that will eventually turn into an essay? Or are you taking notes for a scientific project or procedure? Identifying the goal can help you figure out what information takes priority.
- Take notes by identifying the major points and sub-points of the lesson. Organize your notes so that the main points are left-aligned, and the sub-points get indented. Further indent backup points and details. You can number each point and lower-case letter each subpoint.
- Take breaks. It’s widely known by many that staring at a computer screen for long periods of time can overly saturate your brain. It’s very important to sit in a chair that helps your posture from hunching over your desk. Grab a few pillows to support the base of your spine. Stand up for a bit every 20 minutes and get the blood flowing through your body (have you heard of burpees?).
- Don’t be shy. Ask for help when you need it! Learning online can pose new challenges, make sure you are checking in with yourself and getting the most out of each online learning session
How can you support your child’s online learning?
School closures due to coronavirus have impacted at least 124,000 U.S. public and private schools and affected at least 55.1 million students, according to Education Week. Some things you can do to help your child with this transition is to mix screen time with other mediums of learning.
Allow your child to have a limited amount of “screen play” for socializing or other games. If they are spending most of their day participating in online learning, there will still be the desire to socialize with their friends. As a parent you don’t want to cut them off from this however there needs to be a cap on the face-to-screen time. Don’t underestimate the power of a daily schedule! Encourage your child to make their own “quarantine routine” and you can sign off on after reviewing it together.
Parents need support too! Call other parents and share ideas about what they’re doing about online learning in their household. Hang in there, we are all in this together!
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