Learn how to help your kids pay attention while in virtual school at home.
How to Help Kids Pay Attention in Virtual School
Are your kids in virtual school? How are you helping them to pay attention while school is in session?
A quick glance on Facebook (don’t do it, lol) and you’ll likely see parents and teachers saying how much of a struggle it is to get kids to focus and pay attention while in virtual school.
Bottom line? You’re not alone!
So, how can you help kids pay attention during virtual school?Get these tips to help your kids focus and pay attention during virtual school.
Reasons Why Your Child Cannot Focus in School
If your kids seem unable to concentrate while in virtual school, there may be a few reasons why it is happening. Use this checklist to see if you can help your child focus on school.
Your child did not get enough sleep.
Kids need the right amount of sleep to function, just as we adults do. If they don’t get enough sleep, their focus just won’t be there.
Make sure your kids are getting to bed on time and getting the right amount of sleep for their age. A school aged child should get between 9-11 hours of sleep each night.
Your child could be hungry.
Food is fuel for our bodies. If your child does not have enough fuel to get through a virtual class, their attention is going to wane.
Make sure your child has a healthy breakfast before school starts, and provide healthy snacks and lunch throughout the day.
Your child could be dehydrated.
Dehydration can affect attention spans. When a person is dehydrated, it can affect not only their attention but also their memory, which isn’t great when a child is supposed to be learning during virtual school.
Make sure that your child has enough to drink during the day. Try to get them to drink water as it is best for the brain, but fruit juices and milks are fine in moderation as well.
A fun water bottle with time reminders on it might help!
Your child had too much sugar.
Too much sugar can be harmful in two ways: it can make kids jittery and active, or it can cause a sugar crash that drops energy levels. Neither are good for concentration during virtual school.
Keep an eye on the amount of sugar and sweets your child is consuming throughout the day. If your child has a sweet tooth, try to find healthier alternatives. Peanut butter on celery sticks or homemade fruit popsicles are yummy and can satisfy a sweet craving without too much sugar.
Your child needs to get up and move.
Believe it or not, one of the best ways to help your kids to focus on their school work is to NOT force them to sit and constantly do the work! Seems counterintuitive, but it works.
The adult human brain can focus on tasks for about 35 minutes at a time. For kids, that time may be even shorter, around 20-25 minutes. In order to retain the best level of concentration, breaks are necessary and important.
Breaks give the brain something else to do, giving it energy and helping it to wake up.
It’s a proven fact that movement can help with concentration levels. In school, my kids’ teachers call these “brain breaks”. Usually, the kids do a few exercises or dance around to music for a couple of minutes before getting back to work.
You can try something similar with your virtual school student. In between classes or lessons, have your child get up to move for a few minutes. Look up “Go Noodle” videos on YouTube for inspiration if you need help.
Your child needs a bathroom break.
Young kids in don’t always know when it’s time to go. If your child seems like they can’t still and focus, there could be tummy troubles.
Encourage them to take regular bathroom breaks whenever necessary.
Your child had too much screen time.
Not only are our kids on the computer for hours at a time for school, they may also be using other screens during the day, ending up on screen time overload.
Did you know? The body goes into fight or flight mode, producing excess cortisol, during an online experience with all of the constant alerts and pressing of keys for a needed result. It happens to us adults too, producing some anxiety!
If your children can’t focus on getting their schoolwork done and is antsy, give them a break from all screens. Encourage them to rest their eyes during a catnap or to go outside and just listen to the sounds of nature for a bit.
It might be a good idea to place a limit on all other screens throughout the day during the school week, or to even save other electronic play for the weekend.
Meeting these needs of your child can greatly help their attention span while in virtual school.
How Do You Help Your Child Pay Attention?
Did these tips help? How do you help your child to pay attention while in virtual school?