With the current state of things, many children have moved to online learning. This has left many parents feeling like they are unable to teach their kids. Add to this the fact that children don’t seem to be learning and everyone can be frustrated. So how do you handle all of the learning? I have some tips on how to help kids learn for you.
How to Help Kids Learn
For some context, I spent a lot of time on the phone with a friend last night. He was so worried that his son wasn’t retaining the concepts that were being taught. Even more so, he seemed genuinely over the online learning approach for his six-year-old. So I’m writing this post to help him out and any other parent who is genuinely overwhelmed with all of this.
Teaching a child to read
Teaching a child to read can be so so annoying! I know some parents will say it’s the best experience of their lives. I salute you. For us, it was a massive learning curve as I had to teach a child with dyslexia to read. If you are currently homeschooling or working with a child who is learning to read, this doesn’t have to defeat you. Here are some tips to help you with teaching a child to read.
Take advantage of online learning sites
We are HUGE fans of starfall.com for early phonics learning. Head to the main site, go to Kindergarten and then click on the ABC icon. It will take you to some really fun phonics lessons for kids to help them learn each letter’s sound. We started out with these when they were young. It helped them to sound things out a lot better when word building.
Take advantage of hands-on learning
Many times parents will sit down with a book and say “C-A-T, CAT” and then their children will imitate them. Then the next day, they don’t remember and C-A-T becomes a dog or monkey or something. Here’s the thing. Sometimes you have to change it up a bit. Here a few ways to use hands-on learning with learning to read.
- Build words out of playdoh.
- Use foam letters in the bath.
- Let them write words in shaving cream on a cookie sheet.
- Build words out of dried beans.
Don’t rush the process
It can be so important to understand that not every child will learn to read at the same speed. If your child is struggling with a concept, it may not be laziness. Some learning concepts such as reading are developmental. If your child is trying their best, meet them where they are and let them build confidence and get stronger at what they are good at before moving them forward.
Learning Basic Math Concepts
Basic math concepts like addition and subtraction can be frustrating for younger children to learn remotely. Add to it the fact that each school will teach it in a different way and kids can get downright frustrated. The nice thing is, there are some simple ways to work on basic math concepts.
Using items like cars, candy, or legos to build out a math problem can help a more tactile learner to understand the math concept. Sometimes kids need the ability to see a math problem in order to understand it.
- Build an addition or subtraction problem with different colored legos. – This will help a child to see the math problem.
- Use m&m’s or crackers. – Kids will better understand if they have 3 crackers and you add 4 more that they now have 7 because they can see them and count them.
- Use toy cars or another favorite small toy. – Sometimes using a small toy your child likes will help them to understand a concept better.
Take advantage of YouTube videos for rote memory
Videos like the one above are great for practicing items like skip counting. These videos helped my son to master his skip counting when other methods didn’t work well.
Upper-level math struggles
For every parent, there is a limit to their math abilities. For me, that happened when my daughter started Geometry. My brain can’t remember all of the different formulas and equations for Geometry. Are you reaching the limit of your math education? There are some simple tips to help you get through it.
Take advantage of YouTube
If you are struggling with something your kids have to work on, YouTube can be your best friend. There are countless math teachers on there teaching students different ways to solve the same math problems. If you are struggling to understand a concept, look to YouTube to help your child and yourself out.
Take advantage of math help apps
There are some fantastic apps out there that will let you scan a math problem in and talk you through the solution. These can be a fantastic tool if your child is really struggling.
Lack of desire to learn
Do your kids just hate the way that things are being done? When you are struggling with a lack of desire, there can be a few things going on. Here are some things to try and ways to help you work through this and motivate them.
- Is it a learning struggle? – Sometimes kids will have no desire because they are feeling defeated. Take some time to look at the material and see if they are struggling to learn.
- Are they bored with the material? – The material can sometimes be boring as all get out. Take some time to find ways to help them engage better with the material at hand. My son used to draw the lessons as they were being taught.
- Don’t be afraid to contact the teacher. – If everything you are trying isn’t working, reach out to the teacher of the class. Sometimes they will have tips to help you get your child focused that you might not have considered.