You left Algebra I behind years ago. You haven’t ever had online learning stress. It’s always been comfortable working from your office, while you’re kids were in school with their favorite teachers.
But, 2020 happened, and here we are in 2021, and not a lot has changed. Many of you are still working from home solely or in a hybrid format. And, many of you have children in school part time and at home part time or even home all the time.
The stress is mounting up. In this article, we look at how to reduce online learning stress so you can all coexist peacefully from one day to the next.
Where Does the Stress Come From?
Even for those of us who think we have it all under control, there is a certain amount of inherent stress in the COVID-19 pandemic. Then, pile on top of a weird work and school dynamic, and the stress and anxiety are there, building every day.
Your kids have had to learn how to do school in a different way. They may not have as many outlets for physical activity, and their social lives have been reduced to Snapchat – yikes!
The one good thing about all this stress is you are definitely not alone. Many parents across the country (and the world) are in the same boat, trying to relearn “how to do” school while keeping their own workload under control.
To help you, we’ve put together some tips we’ve found helpful. If you’ve got some of your own, we’d love to hear those, too!
The most important thing is to have an organized workspace for you and another one for your child (ren). Whether this means everyone has their own spot at the dining room table, or they have dedicated desk spaces, an organized space all their own is vital.
You want your kids to have their school supplies at the ready. Think computer, pens/pencils, paper, stapler, notebooks, school books, etc.
Consider putting each child’s school books in their own dedicated basket. This one no one is ever “missing” a book.
You also want to ensure you have your own space that is comfortable and well-lit. If your kids are small, you might want to stick close to them. If you have teenagers, stay in eye distance, or they’re liable to get distracted.
One of our biggest tips? Keep all cellphones in a basket away from workspaces while work is being done. There is simply nothing more distracting to a child, tween, teen, or even us grownups!
Create a Schedule
If you’re the parent with the giant whiteboard in the kitchen, you have a leg up on the rest of us. If you don’t have a family calendar with a schedule on it, it’s time to get one.
Try to think a little big like a school teacher. For example, you could simply hang paper on the wall or refrigerator that looks something like this:
- 8 am: Breakfast
- 8:30 am – 9: 3o am: Math
- 9:30-9:45 am: Outside Break
- 9:45 am – 10:45 am: English
- 10:45 am-11 am: Outside Break
- 11 am – 12 pm: Science
- 12 pm – 1 pm: Lunch and Break
- 1 pm-2 pm: Social Sciences
- 2 pm – 2:15 pm: Outside Break
- 2:15-3:15: Arts and Music
This way your kids can stick to a schedule like they would in school. It will also help you be less stressed to keep a similar schedule for yourself. For example, schedule a time to check email, return calls, and work on specific projects.
Conversely, you can give each child their own schedule. Give it to them on a piece of paper or in their own day planner. Encourage them to cross off tasks as they complete them.
Practice Time Management
This goes along with scheduling. Time management is a hard skill for most adults let alone children learning remotely.
By having calendars, schedules, and clear due dates, it will be easier for everyone to manage their time wisely. And, of course, turning off all phones, televisions, and other digital distractions can help.
Communicate to Reduce Online Learning Stress
Don’t leave your kids to fend for themselves. Check in at least weekly with your child’s teacher to eliminate online learning stress. Make sure they are keeping up and handing in their assignments. It’s much less stressful to stay on top of it than to find out at the end of the month things are not going well.
In addition, keep up communication with your own office and your team. You still need some social activity each day to feel connected with the world around you and less stressed out.
Find Time to Relax and Unwind
Relaxation is vital to eliminating online learning stress. First, spend plenty of time outside. It’s good for you and your children. Plus, Vitamin D is great for your immune system.
When times are challenging as they are now, outside time is stress-free time.
There are many ways to relax and unwind:
- Play outside with your kids.
- Take a walk.
- Read a good book.
- Do yoga.
- Call your friends.
- Bake something delicious.
- Cook together.
- Spend time in your hot tub.
Give everyone a break and let them choose their own form of relaxation. What works best for one member of your family may be different than what works for another. Let yourself relax, too. Make sure to de-stress before going to bed at night so you wake up refreshed for the day ahead.
One of the best ways to do this is to take a hot bath or a hot tub soak about an hour before bed. It will help everyone relax and sleep better for a long day ahead.
Thinking about a hot tub? We can help! Stop by one of our two locations and let our wellness experts show you the road to relaxation.