Love it or hate it, home-based learning (HBL) is here to stay till the end of the month. Being parents ourselves, we understand the difficulties that come with it. Nonetheless, we choose to make the best of this experience both for our children and our families.
We’ve polled our chiropractors and other parents for their tips on how to make the HBL experience better, and here’s our top 5 tips:
1. Set up a conducive learning area and elevate the laptop or monitor to their eye level
While space is a luxury (since everyone’s at home), try to set up a designated learning area with sufficient table space for the computer and worksheets. Ideally, there should be adequate lighting and a proper chair for them to sit on (rather than the floor). When setting up their computer for online learning, make sure that they aren’t sitting too near the screen, and that the centre of the screen is at their eye level. This prevents long term strain on their neck and eyesight.
2. Make time (and space if possible) for physical activities
In the spirit of the circuit breaker, we’re trying our best not to leave the house even for exercise (and to minimize exposure for our kids!). However, our bodies are designed to move and PE is one of the classes (unfortunately) not available online. As such, it’s important that we make time for our family to exercise and stretch to maintain good spinal health. These don’t have to be very difficult, and easy exercise videos for families (like this one) can be found on Youtube.
3. Let them sleep more and recharge
The best thing about HBL? Time saved from not having to commute. This is a great time to let your children clock more hours of sleep, which help with mental and physical development. Children at primary school going ages (6-13 years old) require at least 9 hours of sleep, but experts agree that most need 10-11 hours of sleep. Our bodies need to get adequate rest to repair, and sleep is vital in regulating the immune system (especially important given what’s going on).
4. Teach them home economics and nutrition
Having the whole family at home all day means more meals, more laundry, and more mess to clean up. However, this is a great opportunity involve your children in making easy meals, and to teach them about healthy eating and good nutrition. Eating right is a life skill, and goes beyond the basic food pyramid.
5. Set up a routine and schedule (but be flexible)
In school, children adhere to a strict school timetable that they are used to. If you’re like us, you might have heard echoes of “I’m bored”, and “What can I do now?” about a hundred times after just 1 week of HBL. This boredom is understandable given the lack of interaction with classmates, and inability to run around freely. As such, working out a schedule for them with specific learning times, “recess” times, and other learning activities such as cooking or arts and craft would help them use their time wisely while at home. At the end of the day, rather than trying to keep up with the school’s curriculum, keeping our children engaged with the spirit or learning is what we’re trying to do.
Want to know key things to look out for when setting up your child’s learning area?
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