An Easy Summer Assignment for New Online School Parents
Much like an accomplished sporting league, a successful virtual learning experience evolves from a team effort. In virtual school, the team consists of the student, teacher, and parent or Learning Coach.
As a teacher, I am always eager to talk to parents and students throughout the year so that I can assess progress and help with areas of weakness. If you’re new to virtual school, you might ask yourself, “How do I know if my child is really learning?” To help you better understand your student’s learning style and prepare for regular communication with his or her teacher throughout the year, consider completing the following summer assignment.
Online Learning Coach Summer Assignment
You can start to gauge students’ learning patterns by observing their engagement with enjoyable hobbies. Set some time aside to observe your child while he or she plays a board game, a sport, or even an instrument. Here are some things you can look for:
- What keeps your student’s attention? Is it the colorful board? The characters? Speed or motion? A challenge or competition?
- Watch for facial expressions and determine what they tell you about how your child is connecting with the game or activity. Is he or she smiling or frowning? What kinds of expressions show that your child is thinking hard?
- What seemed to give your child a sense of accomplishment? Was it figuring something out? Achieving a high score? Working as a team with another child? Completing something or reaching a “new level”?
- Observe the verbal cues. What prompted your student to say, “That’s it, I quit!”, or “This is fun”?
- Take note of the amount of time spent engaging. How long did your child stick with it? How could you tell when he or she started losing interest?
- What are your child’s reactions to specific features? For example, did he or she react to the music in the background?
Don’t worry if you can’t quite pinpoint all of your child’s patterns and “triggers” on the first try, as it might take you a while to get a strong grasp on them. This quick assignment will simply help you get started and provide some valuable insight into what might motivate or energize your student when learning.
With more knowledge about your student’s learning patterns, you’ll be able to establish a constructive collaboration with his or her teacher that will stimulate a productive school year! What are some ways you determine if your child is learning? Share your experience with us in the comments.