Navigating COVID Precautions and Learning Challenges with Your Daughter in 2021
There have been many changes that have rocked our daughter’s world in the last 18 months. Most children around the world were engaged in some form of remote learning, while others were kept away from school entirely due to the inaccessibility of technology or internet access.
If your daughter is already back in school, she is extremely fortunate. More than 77 million children in 6 countries around the world are still unable to attend school in person. 27% of other countries still have their schools partially closed.
However, while being able to attend school in person is a gift, it doesn’t come without potential drawbacks and risks. COVID-19 remains uncontained in many countries, and school boards and governments are doing everything possible to keep kids in classrooms while taking on every other precaution possible to mitigate the spread of the disease.
Navigating these COVID precautions with your child can be complex and scary. Many children are afraid to go back to school, and this anxiety and stress can limit their learning. Fortunately, there are lots of things that parents can do to help.
Let’s look at a few of the ways that parents can help their daughters embrace their education during the ongoing pandemic.
1. Understand what COVID precautions your daughters’ school is taking
The easiest way that you can help your daughter navigate the new school year is by gaining a good understanding of the COVID precautions she’ll have to follow.
Once you’re familiar with the rules, you can help her by providing all the necessary supplies (like masks, face shields, and hand sanitizer), and reminding her of expected new behaviours every day.
2. Practice following COVID-19 precautions together
Teachers are having a tough year. The more that you can help your daughter by introducing her to the expected COVID precautions before school starts, the easier it will be on her, and her teacher.
Start by reviewing the rules on a regular basis. Some ideas of conversation starters include:
“Hey, so you’ll need to be washing your hands a lot at school. Do you know where the bathrooms are?”
“Can you remind me how far away from your friends you need to be in your classroom?”
“Wearing a mask feels a bit different, but I know you’ll get used to it!”
You can also practice useful habits like hand washing, covering their nose and mouth when they sneeze, and sanitizing their hands.
3. Help your daughter understand the importance of taking precautions without causing fear
So many children are struggling with anxiety and fear over COVID precautions. To help set her mind at ease and put her in a better headspace for learning, reassure your daughter by expressing empathy. Then, give her all the necessary space to express her fears and frustrations.
4. Encourage your daughter to take advantage of digital tools
Many schools are using digital tools like tablets and educational streaming platforms to bridge the gap when students need to be away from school, either due to a COVID exposure or just a regular absence.
To help make these tools more familiar to your daughter, allow her to explore them on her own time. You could help her watch a video using the educational streaming platform, or just show her the ins and outs of using a tablet. This will help make any temporary remote learning experience more productive for her.
Your daughter’s school year may not look 100% normal, but with a bit of effort from parents, children, and school administrators, we can work together to ensure our children aren’t held back from their learning goals.