When Shelter in Place was instated, I spent the first couple weeks trying to help families with the challenges involved with their homes now also becoming their offices and schools. Everyone was overwhelmed with no time to seek help. So I immediately created a list of over 400 learning resources organized by age and subject. These free and cheap resources kept children engaged and learning, so that parents could have some guilt-free time to themselves.
With the end of the school year, I began to create opportunities for reflection. I spoke with our own clients first. Then on Thurs 6/11/20, I polled parents in over twenty parenting groups on Facebookwho have had their children home full-time during Shelter in Place. I asked them all about their greatest challenges that they wish they had help with. Nearly 200 parents chimed in.
The major pain points for parents:
Not enough time to get everything done (42%). Parents lamented that finding a work-school-life balance has been tough. They have not been able to properly organize their time and space, which has caused some stress. Furthermore, the daily tasks, such as cooking and laundry, have often been neglected. And forget about any personal time!
Difficulty with motivating, engaging, and teaching their children (38%). Parents have struggled to teach the higher-level content, such as math and science. They also have had a hard time determining and delivering academically and developmentally appropriate curriculum. Parents have also struggled with managing different instruction and individualized attention for their children of various ages/grades. Getting their children to be motivated and engaged has also been a daily challenge. Many parents also reported feeling guilty about the amount of screen time their kids are getting.
Lack of socialization (14%). Parents are saddened by their children’s loneliness, stating that they are not getting enough time with their teachers or peers. Parents themselves also report feeling isolated and discouraged.
Did you face some of these same challenges during Shelter in Place?
With my decades of experience working with families to achieve success, I began to compile solutions to these pressing problems. My hope is that, with preparation, we can be better prepared for hybrid/remote learning in the fall.
Stay tuned for the next Blogs outlining my suggestions to addressing the challenges during Shelter in Place.