The dilemma is yet to be solved. No sooner is a return-to-school plan established, then something changes. It’s a challenging time for parents who are juggling onsite and remote work while helping their children with e-learning, adjusting to daycare changes, and trying to make plans for children to return to school classrooms – at least part-time.
Despite the natural resilience of children, many are feeling uncertain and unsafe, and anxiety is rising. As parents, we must focus on what we can do as a family, rather than on the negativity of unavoidable changes.
Tips for Helping Your Children Thrive
Carry on your typical back to school preparations: Take them shopping for standard back to school supplies. Even if they are spending some days e-learning, they use consumables, such as notebooks, pens, pencils, markers, highlighters, etc. Taking time to “go shopping” keeps a positive twist on the school adventure. If you usually purchase new backpacks, buy one. If they are e-learning, it still makes a great place to keep their ‘school” items organized.
Keep a consistent schedule: Regular wake-up and bedtimes, mealtimes, etc. provide your child with a sense of control and stability, as well as overall wellbeing.
Make e-learning days an opportunity: Create a ‘school’ space. Provide incentives for being diligent in e-learning assignments to help them stay on track when they are home, as well as for participating in class, listening to their teacher, and completing homework when they go to school. If you have older children, set up a virtual study hall with their classmates.
Stay connected with your school: Read bulletins sent home with your children and pay attention to social media avenues your school uses for updates. Ensure that you understand what is expected of your child on e-learning days. Ask about any assistance or programs that might be available.
Explain the reason behind the actions being taken by officials: For example, if they think social distancing is because somebody might “make” them sick, that invites an attitude of fear and distrust. On the other hand, if they believe social distancing is because we never know when we might be carrying a bug and we want to be kind and protect others, it invites a more positive angle of thoughtfulness.
Talk about options when faced with a ‘crisis’: Discuss both positive and negative responses, then demonstrate the positive in your behavior. Discuss the changes they face and encourage them to give input. Exhibiting calm adaptability, problem-solving, and ingenuity helps your children do likewise.
Monitor screen time: Yes, they will naturally have more when they are home all day, but don’t let it become the catch-all. Instead, replace it with other choices. Encourage outdoor activities, creative projects, reading, and other avenues for passing the time.
Involve them in helping others within safety guidelines: For example, a younger child could color pictures for an elderly neighbor while an older child could make a simple meal for them. If you call before going, drop it off on their doorstep, and then stand back while your goody basket is retrieved, everyone is not only safe, but also learned lessons on both giving and receiving.
In the end, adversity can make us stronger – a ‘school’ lesson we all can learn. So, Happy Back-to-School Days from Rentals America. As a premier property management company, we are the place you can find a place to call home. Contact us today.
Links to updates on Arizona schools: