5 Ways to Support Your Online Elementary School Student
The time has come—your child has entered the world of learning! Starting school can be both exciting and challenging for kids. Whether attending a bricks-and-mortar school or an online school, elementary students often learn best when they have parents who are actively involved in their education.
Kids can benefit from supervision, guidance, and reassurance as they transition from leisure and play to more structured learning. Use the tips and online elementary success stories below to inspire you as you embark on the start of your child’s academic journey.
Oversee daily lessons and assignments.
One of the great things about online school is that parents and Learning Coaches have more opportunities to work closely with their student throughout the school day. With a high level of oversight from a caring adult, elementary school students—who are slowly adjusting to following a learning routine—are more likely to have a productive and successful school year. The amount of guidance needed will vary for each student, but many families say they spend about five hours a day supporting their child’s learning.
Recap the school day.
It’s always a good idea to recap the school day with your student, especially during the lower grade levels, when repetition is key to retaining important academic concepts. Ask several questions, such as, “What did you learn today?” “What was your favorite part of the day?” and “Was there anything you didn’t understand?”, so you can gauge comprehension and progression. Even with close supervision, you may be surprised by your student’s responses!
Schedule plenty of breaks.
There is no right or wrong online school schedule, but it’s important to plan plenty of breaks for your child during the learning day. Young students in particular tend to have a short attention span. Something as simple as a quick snack or a walk around the neighborhood can help your student feel reenergized and ready to tackle the next assignment.
Provide motivation and encouragement.
Overcoming frustration and discouragement is part of the learning process. Do your best to keep your child motivated and encouraged by being his or her personal cheerleader! If students express a desire to throw in the towel, remind them that you believe in their abilities and that you are proud of them no matter what.
Communicate with the teacher often.
Make sure to stay in frequent communication with your student’s teacher. Online teachers usually make an effort to contact families often; however, don’t hesitate to reach out on your own for questions, help, or just a simple check-in. Keep in mind that the online school works best when teachers and parents work closely together to ensure that the student is getting a personalized learning experience and achieving his or her academic goals.
Online Elementary School Superstars
Learn how Connections Academy®–supported online schools are helping these elementary school students to reach their full potential.
Emily Pascu, Oregon Connections Academy (ORCA), grade 5
Looking for a more personalized learning experience, Emily Pascu and her family decided to make the switch to online school. At ORCA, she is able to work at a pace that suits her. The school’s scheduling flexibility also gives Emily more time to pursue personal interests, including scouting, dancing, and playing outside.
Gwen and Gabe Mills, Washington Connections Academy (WACA), grade 3 and grade 4
Online students Gwen and Gabe Mills don’t have to worry about getting lost in a crowded classroom anymore. Their mother, Kira, is pleased that she was able to find the perfect academic fit for them after trying both traditional schooling and homeschooling. Through frequent communication and interaction, Gwen and Gabe have built meaningful relationships with their WACA teachers.
Ryker Craig, California Connections Academy, grade 5
With interactive and engaging lessons, Ryker Craig is thoroughly enjoying school at California Connections Academy. He likes his teachers, who help to make learning fun. Ryker’s favorite subject is math.
Mason Glass, Georgia Connections Academy (GACA), grade 1
Mason Glass is excited to be following in his older sister’s footsteps by starting his academic journey with GACA. He likes that he can learn from the comfort of home and that he doesn’t wake up early to catch a bus to school. Mason’s favorite subject is science, and in the future he would like to become a scientist.
Rion Gordon, South Carolina Connections Academy (SCCA), grade 5
Advanced learner Rion Gordon needed a more challenging learning environment, so he enrolled in SCCA. Now, he can learn at an appropriate level without having to wait for his classmates to catch up. Rion’s family is grateful for SCCA’s supportive teachers and staff.
Transitioning to online elementary school can be challenging for young students, but you can help them quickly adjust by actively guiding, motivating, and supporting them throughout the learning day!
How do you support your elementary school student and help him or her achieve success? Share your story and advice in the comments!