Tips for Making a Virtual Learning Environment at Home
Going back to school this fall looks a lot different than it did a year ago. Most school districts have opted for some type of virtual learning as a part of their reopening plans. One way to make the virtual learning experience as successful as possible is to create an organized space at home. It is very important to include your children in the planning and design of the workspace because it will help them to stay motivated and excited during their remote learning experience. Here are a few tips for parents and students to consider when setting up their virtual learning environment at home:
- Location: Pick a quiet place in the house that will allow your child to focus on their work. An ideal area would be away from high traffic areas in the house, but also close enough so that they can reach out easily to an adult if help is needed. Although some children may want to work in their bedrooms, it may be more difficult to monitor whether or not they are on task. If you decide to let your child work in their bedroom, make sure they have a designated space to do work other than their bed. Research has shown that working in bed can lead to inefficiency and difficulty sleeping.
- Workspace: The workspace should be a desk or table that is large enough to accommodate your child’s computer, keyboard, and school supplies. Keep in mind that there should also be enough space for them to write while they are online. Make sure there is ample lighting available as well. You may also want to consider what type of background will be seen when they share video online.
- Materials: All materials should be organized neatly and within reach. Use a small shelving unit or plastic bins for papers and a container for pens/sharpened pencils. Consider creating a separate shelf/container for all the materials needed for each class and make sure that it is clearly labeled. Encourage your child to make sure they have all their materials every morning before class starts.
- Use a calendar or planner: Use a calendar or planner to help keep track of schedules and assignments. You may want to use a dry erase calendar/board, wall calendar, desk calendar, or daily planner. Think about what will fit best in the workspace and how your child learns best, but most importantly, let them pick what they want.
While most people would agree that remote learning is not an ideal way to learn, it is the reality of our situation in 2020. With a little planning and preparation, families can help make the virtual learning experience the best it can be!
Any questions? Please email us at Janice@Neighborhoodlit.com. Taylor Burke is a teacher and Director of Communications at Neighborhood Lit. and works closely with Janice Migliazza, a Reading Specialist and owner of Neighborhood Lit, Route 34, Colts Neck to bring you this information.