Tips and Tools to Help Kids Focus in Quarantine
Even if you’ve been living under a rock you’re aware of the current global pandemic. CoVID-19 has caused a lot of damage to people and for the last few months has completely changed how we live our lives. With the death count slowly increasing every day, many people are living under periods of immense stress.
Not only that but we are unable to properly deal with our stress as we normally would. We can’t just go to the gym to run off a bad mood or go see our friends to cheer us up. We are unable to manage our health on our own terms. Not to mention, that so many of us are going completely stir crazy.
With many people out of work, and the rest of us working from home, seeing the same four walls of our houses every day is starting to drive people a little mad. After months of social distancing, many of us are starting to lose focus. Especially those of us who have children.
For Those With Children
Most places in the U.S. have already canceled school out for the rest of the current year. Normally for kids, this sounds like a dream come true, but in reality, this is majorly sad news for a lot of students.
Older students are finding out their prom has been canceled and the same with their graduation ceremony. There are no sports teams meeting, or after school activities. And most kids would rather at least be able to see their friends at school but with social distancing in place, they won’t be seeing their friends at all.
Even if no school seemed amazing before, I think many kids are realizing just how bored and lonely they would be without the scheduling of school. School, work, our daily activities, give our days meaning and add structure to our lives. Without the day to day dramas of school anxiety and work stress, we are left to endless days with no consequence.
Many parents are unsure of how to keep their children entertained and focus. Parents are worried about mental health as well, wondering what kind of effect living through a global pandemic will have on a generation of children.
Tools To Help Kids Focus
On top of schools closing, regents testing and many other educational rulers aren’t being used. Most schools are giving pass/fail grade based on the work they’ve done in the first half of the school year. Only limited work is being asked of students on digital classroom programs like Blackboard and Canvas.
These work like bulletin boards where assignments are posted and students submit their homework to the assignment. So while school is less of a stress for kids, there is still some school work to help them eat up some time.
Helping your kids keep up with their school work is one of the important tools to help kids focus. Here are some more tools to help kids focus.
Give Your Kids a Schedule
Use whatever schools are still providing as one of the tools to help kids focus you can utilize. But without the structure of school telling kids which classes to go to when, and teachers directly handing them assignments, the learning is suddenly free-form. As a parent, you can fulfill the role of the teacher and school in so far as providing a schedule.
One of the best things you can do for your kids during quarantine is to make them a schedule and keep them to it every day. Perhaps you can let your kids sleep in a little longer than they would normally, but not every day.
Getting them up at a consistent time will help their internal clock stay on track. Get them washed and dressed and eating at regular times so they don’t feel their entire lives have been turned upside down.
A lot of parents are struggling with working from home while their children are also home looking for entertainment. One good idea would be to arrange your schedule and their together.
This way you can make sure your kids are working on their homework while you have a Zoom conference meeting or while you apply for loan. Many small businesses are in the process of applying for government loans through the payment protection program.
You can also arrange your breaks with their snack times and lunches. This way the family can spend time together. Also be sure to add in some time where you can go over your children’s schoolwork with them, and see if they had trouble understanding any specific points.
Factor Time for Fun
With all the bad going on in the world it can be hard to focus on some of the good things to have come out of this. Reminding yourself to take the opportunity to spend some good quality time with your kids and family can help you deal with situations like this a lot.
For parents who are no longer together and have had arguments over child custody law, this can be a particularly stressful time. Is one parent not allowed to see the child for months at a time to not risk spreading any infection? This has to be decided between you and whomever you are co-parenting with. But if one parent is unable to see the child being sure to schedule in a time that works around their schedule for zoom meetings is important.
But making sure your scheduling is flexible and allows for the human ebb and flow of feeling. If your child is “scheduled” to so their math work at 11 am but they just can’t focus and sit still that day, put it off. The current situation demands flexibility and rolling with the punches.
Getting your kids active is another great way to help them pass the quarantine. Take the family for a daily walk around the neighborhood, or at least make sure your kids are getting outside at least an hour a day or so. Fresh air is good for the body and regular movement promoted healthy blood flow.
These days getting kids outside and off their phones can be a challenge these days though. With social media marketing platforms intentionally designed to keep people engaged with their social media pages it can be hard to resist the urge to scroll. Social media can be one of the tools used to help kids focus but it can also be their greatest distraction.
With online classroom programs like blackboard and the capability to do Zoom lessons with students the internet has made itself one of the tools to help kids focus the most. There is educational learning in all different media available online.
Kids who learn better from working on the subject head-on can find interactive worksheets that will help them learn the best way possible. While a child who is more of a visual learner can watch informational videos or slideshows that illustrate the required learning. In a world where AI health claims review, which are when an artificial intelligence program completes medical paperwork, finding the right digital learning tools to help kids focus is small stuff.
The internet will also help your child stay connected with their friends and can come in clutch to entertain your child when they’re feeling particularly antsy. But it is important to make sure your kids aren’t having too much screentime. Though smart devices are one of the tools to help kids focus, it can also be one of their greatest hindrances.
Studies indicate that social media can literally become addictive. When someone receives social engagement with their social media it releases dopamine to the brain. Aka the thing that makes you feel good and happy when you’re on drugs. Though it is not the same as doing some form of illicit drugs, it does have some potential side effects.
Your child’s mental health could be negatively affected by social media, or perhaps if they’re social media engagement isn’t as high as their peers. The pressure to look a certain way presented by Instagram models can leave, teens especially, feeling down in the dumps and with low self-esteem.
On top of all this, many social media platforms keep a record of your information. They will sell this information to other companies so that targeted google ads will appear. This is just one of many internet marketing strategies that companies will employ to get better advertising results.
To avoid having too much information shared without your knowledge or permission, be aware of how much social media time your children are getting.
Take Care of Yourself
One of the most important tools to help kids focus is having a steady captain to steer them through these confusing times. One of the most important things you can do for your kids is to be there for yourself.
Many use the metaphor about putting on an oxygen mask while on a plane in a scary situation. It is explained that you should put an oxygen mask on yourself before helping someone else put theirs on. Similarly, you need to make sure you’re keeping tabs on yourself and how you’re handling all of this.
Take a day off to spend with them if you’re working from home. But also make sure you add in a little bit of personal “me” time. It’s a balance that many have trouble juggling but this can be a more targeted time to work through these delineations.
Talk To Your Kids
Finally, another one of the most important tools to help your kids focus, is by communicating with them openly. Most people are confused, concerned and scared based on all the current news going around.
Even if your children are too young to fully understand what is happening, it is still affecting them every day. You have to open communication with your children as much as you can and make sure they have an understanding of what is going on and how serious it is.
Though its important to not stress your child too much, leaving them in the dark may stress them out even more. Managing how much to tell them is a hard decision but honesty goes a long way in these conversations. When you have to give answers you don’t want to like “I don’t know” it can help humanize you and the situation to your children. As long as you follow up these statements with positive affirmations of “but we’ll get through this together” will help your children understand the gravity of what is happening.
Being sure to be a central force of consistency and strength will help guide your kids through the pandemic. You can be their captain through the storm. Worrying about the spiritual and mental healing of your children in these trying times is not an easy task. But neither is being a parent, and it is always worth it to take the time to put the effort it.
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