After a few weeks of home learning, you may be starting to wonder if it’s possible to keep the kids focused and organised, when life right now, is anything but! These organisational hacks and tips should do the trick.
//1. Make a study space
Creating a comfortable but functional, organised workspace for your child is a must.
Choose an area free of distractions. This basically rules out the middle of the lounge room (in sight of the TV) or kitchen table among the mess of breakfast.
The focus needs to be on creating a space where you and your child can hang out for long periods, even if you’re getting on each other’s nerves.
//2. Help them set a schedule
If you want to avoid your child treating this period like a holiday, it’s important to establish a consistent structure for the day.
This doesn’t mean setting 6-8 hours worth of hardcore literacy and numeracy tasks, but it does mean beginning at a consistent time each morning and perhaps following the regular structure of the school day (work time with recess and lunch breaks in between).
// 3. Keep it tidy
The physical space around us affects how we think and feel.
A neat and tidy space can promote a sense of calm, while an untidy one can make us frazzled, which is never a good thing when it comes to learning.
Starting each day with a desk that’s free of clutter and full of well-organised school supplies can help kids focus and process information, as well as increase their productivity—no more wasting precious learning minutes looking for lost notebooks.
// 4. Make a tech box.
Online learning comes with as many cords as there are subjects! Keep all those chargers, headphones, cables and other tech gadgets tidy and together in one spot that’s within reach, but preferably out of site.
// 5. Colour code
Research shows that colour coding is not only an effective organisational tool, but it can increase productivity (kids can find things faster when they’re bright and colourful) and help students retain information better.
Plus, it looks pretty. Allocate a different colour for each subject, then stock up on paper and pens that match.
// 6. Schedule an organisation hour
Set aside a time in Life Sorted during the week dedicated to schoolwork spring-cleaning.
One hour for the kids (with your help if needed) to go through all the paper on their desk/in their folders/scattered around the house, and either throw them out or move them to the right spot.
Do the same with any digital files from the week—make sure documents follow a descriptive naming convention and are stored in the correct spot on their device.
// 7. Turn to tools
For the older kids, there are a range of free online tools and apps that can help them organise their homework schedule, set reminders that keep them accountable, and speed up their progress.
With project management and collaboration platforms like Trello or Asana they can list each task, attach documents, and update their progress.
You might also consider a shared Google Calendar, which can be accessed from any device and will help everyone organise schedules.
If you’re teaching work sent by your school, it’s a great idea to create a timetable with slots for each subject.
Breaking things up into manageable chunks and defining one task per slot will help if you’re feeling overwhelmed.
// 8. Box it up
Invest in a large container for each child that can act as a locker/school bag to store all their school-related items at the end of each day.
This comes in handy when you have multiple children learning from home, or younger kids that like to “borrow” their older siblings’ things.
If it’s all neatly packed away, nothing gets mixed up or goes missing, and is easy to move around if needed.
// 9. Set a good example.
We know that as parents, your actions and attitudes can strongly influence your kids’ behaviour.
Now that you’re sharing an office with them, they get to see you in an environment where they normally wouldn’t; and if an organised workspace is important to you, they’ll follow suit.
// 10. Keep a VIP call list
If you or your child have any questions, or if they’re struggling with a subject, you’ll want to have access to the relevant school people’s contact information, just in case.
Keep this list somewhere close; on a post-it note near your child’s desk or on the fridge. And if you don’t already have one, a Whatsapp group message with the parents from your kid’s class can be a great way to keep yourself in the loop.
Even the most organised child might need some extra support during this tough time. Our partner, Cluey Learning, is the largest online tutoring service in Australia, helping kids catch up, keep up and excel from the comfort of their couch.
Learn more about what they can do for your kids, and save 20% here.
Visit clueylearning.com.au/lifesorted to learn more about what Cluey do and how they can help your child feel calm capable and confident in the classroom.
**Disclaimer: This blog has been guest authored by Cluey Learning, the experts in online tutoring for Australian school students.**