Remote Learning: 5 Tips to Help Your Child Pay Attention

Pre teen girl black girl using a laptop computer sitting at table in the dining room with her home tutor, close up, selective focus

By Sapphire Girod
Brand Experience Officer, Reputation Management
Unit Trust Corporation

Is their attention span dipping?
Easily distracted?
Uninterested in online assignments?

Take a step back for a moment, you need to understand that this is new to both of you. The reality is that classroom learning is quite different from remote learning and adjusting can be challenging.

Here are 5 Tips to help:
1. Teach Them Listening and Learning Skills

Young children need to understand what it means “to pay attention”. Support their efforts by describing what learning remotely involves: why they need listen to what is being said, to not speak out-of-turn, focus on the person speaking on the screen and how they can respond to and ask questions. Each week be sure to ask them what their favorite part of online classes were and why. This would give you a better idea of what their challenges are how to improve their learning skills.

2. Create A Designated Learning Zone

This can be difficult especially with more than one child, but it is not impossible. Wherever you can find an area free from distraction, make sure it is their dedicated area. Get them involved in personalizing their learning zone based on their age, whether it’s a handcrafted sign with their names or setting up a desk with writing and other stationery. This not only helps to trigger online learning time versus recreational time but helps them to stay focused.

3. Take Several Breaks

It is important for children to reduce the monotony of sitting for long periods. Give them a few minutes to get up and stretch their legs or arms. Design an activity board they can choose from when they start getting fidgety e.g. 1-minute juice break or 30 seconds yoga pose, for instance. You can also have a chat with the teacher to include structured break times.

4. Be Involved but Don’t Be A Distraction

Some children, especially older ones, focus better with minimal or little supervision; others may require more of your time and assistance. Taking a hands-off approach is risky and hovering constantly is not going to help.

Children can become easily distracted even with you around so it’s best to understand your child’s needs to determine how close you need to be. By trial and error, you can find out what works best.

5. Keep Communication Lines Open

Allowing your child to freely express themselves can go a long way in boosting confidence and mental well-being as they adjust to remote learning. Having negative emotions can overshadow their desire to focus. Instead of disciplining them for their disinterest, try talking to them about what is causing the problem.

Let’s do all we can to help our children succeed.