School is important, but right now, it’s not everything.
Some students out there are thoroughly engaged with their schoolwork and getting plenty of instruction. Other students are not receiving the guidance they need or want right now. Their engagement and motivation with schoolwork might be inconsistent or lagging. Perhaps they’re connecting less with the material or are struggling with teacher or peer relationships that no longer feel as safe or as strong.
Those factors, plus the psychological impact and uncertainty of a global pandemic, may mean that your student isn’t showing much interest in their academics.
As a parent, this is an important time to remind yourself that education and learning are not limited to textbooks, school, and (now) Zoom. In fact, it’s a great opportunity for families to embrace other aspects of education and learning.
If your student is not feeling super jazzed about school, or if they have extra free time, encourage them to spend it in a way that’s intentional and purposeful. These long days indoors will feel more satisfying if you choose purposeful activities instead of mindlessly scrolling through social media or hitting refresh on the news (this applies to parents, too!).
You and your student may be tired of getting advice about how to effectively pass the time during quarantine. We’re not here to tell you what to do. The Top 10 Tool is simply an opportunity to broaden the conversation around learning. It’s a great way to help students identify what interests them and take initiative.
Students and parents can brainstorm ideas for this list together, but parents should make sure it doesn’t become their personal to-do list for their child.
You also don’t have to complete every square! You don’t need 10 ideas in every category, and you don’t have to complete all the categories. Easy does it.
Once you’ve filled out the Top 10 Tool, your student can identify one or more areas that interest them. While they may not be able to venture outside, there are courses and tutorials for every topic under the sun available online.
Keep in mind that the activity your student chooses does not replace homework. They still need to put in academic effort. But this list may help open new avenues of exploration and learning if school doesn’t feel very exciting right now.