Learning Challenges of Children – Online Classes

The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way the students learn around the world. Schools have closed and the children have lost their routine of studies and schooling.

The situation has to lead to a new way of learning through digital platforms, where teaching and learning have moved from inside the walls of the classrooms.

But this new normal of learning remains impossible for many children in rural areas due to many reasons – poor/no internet access, no proper gadgets/systems etc.

Approximately, 1.2 billion children have been affected all over the world during this global pandemic situation, whereas it is feared that millions might drop out of schools in the coming year.

While, on one side, children are in a position not to take up digital learning, the millions attending the online classes suffer the other way?

From assessing how effective is this long distance learning to increased screen time to the effects on physical health, everything is of a great concern.

Challenges of Learning through Online Classes

Concentration

Children losing focus while listening during classes is not a new thing or unknown, they seem to get distracted more easily while listening through a laptop or a gadget. Until a few months ago, they were tuned to attend lectures sitting in classrooms, where teachers were able to engage them better.

A complete change from that old set up of learning, the psychological shock to their mental system, the total newness about the way of their learning will take a considerable amount of time to sink into their minds.

Lack of interest

Apart from classes, the school provides a number of opportunities for the children to have fun. The up and down travel to the school itself should be a great fun time. The chats, the group songs, small, small bickering with friends, bus snacks etc. are some of the amusing activities which are a part of their daily routine.

The monotonous daily routine of learning and leisure both at home environment, Having been deprived of fun chats with friends, locked inside the home with little to less exciting outdoor amusements can easily make a child dull and become less interested in anything.

Missing Fun-Filled Extra Curricular Classes

Online classes, however well-organized they are, they for sure, cannot offer the fun of outdoor sports coaching, art and craft classes and other extra-curricular and project activities done in schools.

The class hours would most probably be scheduled as a mix of subject classes and outdoor and indoor coaching, to keep them physically and mentally fresh and active. Online classes on the other hand, would be live or recorded sessions of only curricular subjects, which can drain them physically and more so mentally.

Know more about How to make your Kids Smart here How to Make your Kid Smart

Non reliable internet access

Internet facilities are still a challenge in many parts of the world and uninterrupted connection still a bigger challenge even for those who have access to the Internet. A breaking internet connection between the classes can distract them more.

Lack of Technical Knowledge

The students, especially young children might find it extremely difficult to manage with the classes, let alone attending it attentively, had they not been exposed to computers and how to handle gadgets etc before.

It would become harder, if the parents are technically not so sound.

Extra Screen Time

Children’s too much screen exposure may affect their eye sight very badly and leads to drying eyes and headache, migraine in early age.

On the other side, children who were allowed to use gadgets and play video games already will be now exposed to longer screen time which is very bad for their health. Fatigue, tired eyes, sleepiness, eyesight problems, etc. might be some of the problems arising out of this.

Know more about Children’s Eye Health here Children’s Eye Health: Tips For Eye Care, Protecting Eyesight and Handling Eye Emergencies

Tips to help children overcome these problems 

  • Adapting to the new normal is the first step, familiarize with this new virtual classroom learning instead of face to face interacting classes.
  • Parents should motivate children, instill a positive attitude and help them to self-motivate as well to go with the new educational trends.
  • A proper, time schedule planner on a regular basis is needed for making this online learning more effective to balance their day to day life interesting.
  • Parents should help the children by getting the required technical support, providing the equipment with good internet connection.
  • Parents should use blue light protective screen for the gadgets which is used by children for regular online classes and also should have proper intervals of time of every class.
  • Inculcate a habit of mild eye exercises and body stretches, a relaxed body helps in a relaxed mind as well. Parents can join their children during those stretching workouts.
  • Parents can try to replace their previously regular outdoor activities with a morning sunshine time in the balcony/terrace, a morning walk, fun games. Friends are friends, but parents can be their good friends too.
  • Parents should try and understand the psyche of their children from their shoes rather than trying to perfect them.
  • Parents can encourage their creative learning (does not require that the parent be an expert), sharpen their writing skills, home decor, cooking etc. Everything is a learning. 
  • Activities that calm the mind like gardening, meditation etc., not just help them feel stress-free and less irritated, but also can go a long way in developing a great personality as well.
  • Parents can cheer their children specifying on the fact that how they are continuing to learn in the comfort of their home.
  • The child might be nervous about attending school classes right under the nose of his parents. Don’t panic him more, smile more and make them understand if there is a concern later calmly. (His teacher would have handled the same way probably. Again we repeat, do not try to perfect the child too much. Let the children be.)
  • Parents should help the child believe that learning from home is equally fun. Venting or speaking out to other elders or other members of the family about the shortcomings of online classes or criticizing about the child/teacher/classes in a bad state is a big wrong.

Benefits of online classes for children

  • Though there are challenges in online classes, we must agree that there are benefits too.
  • The time duration of daily classes is reduced.
  • Learning in the comfort of home and mother’s fresh cooked meals.               
  • No up and down travel to school.
  • A closer look at how the child is actually attending the classes.

                                                          Happy parenting !!!

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