Five tips to support learning during COVID-19 home schooling

Just as you breathed a sigh of relief because your children were back at school, another lockdown for greater metropolitan Melbourne and the Mitchell Shire was announced this month. Home schooling or remote learning during COVID-19 adds another layer of stress and challenge to an already tension filled time. Having feelings of anxiety and uncertainty are normal responses to this second wave of home schooling and can include:

· Concern about how long you need to home school for.

· The impact home schooling will have on your children’s education and your work productivity.

· Anger, sadness and frustration that Victoria is in this situation while other states and territories have resumed normal schooling.

The following tips will help you support your children and manage your own stress during home schooling.

1. Relax and simplify your home schooling standards

During the first lockdown, you may have realised that being a teacher, a parent, keeping up with your own remote work schedule and running a home is a lot of jobs to take on. To improve your wellbeing, it can be helpful to accept that you can’t be as productive as you were pre COVID-19. The following sentences as a reminder on a whiteboard or Post It note may be beneficial:

· I am not my child’s teacher. I’m doing my best to help my children learn during COVID-19. 

· I’m doing my best to work remotely from home during COVID-19.

· Focusing on what I can do right now rather than in the next 24 hours can reduce my anxiety and stress.

2. Keep your daily home schooling schedule flexible

A regular schedule can help your children develop a routine and some predictability to their day. When you’re home schooling, you don’t have to recreate a school schedule though. Sitting down as a family to develop a schedule that includes hands-on learning activities, exercise, fun and family connection. So you can get some of your remote work done too, schedule some creative activities for your children so you can get block of time without interruptions.

3. Use technology to feed your child’s imagination

If your children are missing being with their teacher while reading, listening to an audio book is the next best option. During lockdown, Audible has made available for free kid’s audio books to stream on your tablet or smart phone. For children who enjoy drawing, Open Culture offers free online drawing lessons led by leading artists.

And for children with an interest in history, art, animals and culture, you can tour international zoos, museums and art galleries online. Some popular virtual tours include:

· Melbourne Zoo Animals at Home

· The Louvre Paris online tour

· The Guggenheim Museum in Amsterdam

· National Gallery of Victoria virtual tour

4. Reach out for support

There will be days during home schooling that go smoothly and just as many days that feel overwhelming. When your emotions are high after a stressful day, it’s important to remember you’re not their teacher. Teaching your children to garden or bake cupcakes is a useful way to keep their creativity and curiosity alive away from their desk.

We are here to support your mental health during these stressful times. Telehealth sessions with a psychologist at 

Cova Psychology can help you reduce stress and anxiety while giving you support strategies. Contact us to book a Psychologist Melbourne. Our Melbourne Psychologists offer a wide range of therapies including EMDR Therapy Melbourne.

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Dr. Chris Coleiro

Chris is a co-director of Cova Psychology, where he provides supervision to psychologists whilst cultivating a supportive culture within the Cova team. Chris has worked extensively in the assessment and treatment of trauma, PTSD, and Borderline Personality Disorder. He combines a range of therapies in his approach including CBT, Schema Therapy, EMDR and IFS.