Though there’s no question that the COVID-19 pandemic took a heavy toll on parents and kids as they navigated remote learning, re-opening is becoming yet another maze of shifting schedules, curriculums, and academic requirements. Busy parents are still managing a long list of educational and emotional challenges; ensuring their child is keeping pace with their coursework, that they understand the changes happening, and that their child has the support they need to handle the shift. Adding hybrid or fully in-classroom learning introduces a new layer of complications as parents juggle returning to the office and keeping students on track. As families work together to rebuild academically and socially, extra support from educators ensures that children have the skills they need to manage their schoolwork and removes the burden of being “the bad guy” from parents that need to focus on their child’s emotional well-being.
Closing the Learning Gap
Childhood education is essential as it builds the foundation for success for the rest of a child’s life. But the coming semester, whether it’s a summer term or returning to school this fall, is one of the most important as students return to in-person learning. A recent McKinsey report revealed that the average American student from kindergarten to fifth grade missed 20% of the reading and 33% of the math skills they would have learned in 2019. To help students catch up, a growing number of school districts are opening up the summer term to any interested families, a much-needed step for many students and families that need a “return to normal.” But summer school comes with its own challenges: a RAND survey found that 20 days of summer school is the equivalent of 20-25% of a standard school year. Though the majority of children will benefit from additional in-person education, parents need to make sure their child has the skills and support they need to make the most of the extra time in the classroom. Programs like Homework Helpers are designed to bridge the gap among kids, their parents, and the demands of school by working with each student individually to help them organize and manage their workload so that the child isn’t overwhelmed, feels more engaged in classes, and learns time management skills that will help them in school, higher education, and their careers.
Reducing the Burden on Parents and Teachers
Understandably, parents and educators alike are concerned about gaps caused by virtual learning. According to research from the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy, 42 percent of American parents are “very concerned” that their children have fallen behind academically over the past year. Meanwhile, 40 percent of teachers say they need “major” or “very major” strategies to help students catch up to grade level when surveyed by the RAND Corporation in conjunction with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. With both sides managing high stress levels, it’s not surprising that parents and teachers are anxiously resuming in-person learning. The challenge, however, is that they’ll be relying on equally stressed and overwhelmed students as their main form of communication. As every parent knows, school forms, no matter how important, are often lost in a child’s backpack even in the best of times. But with the shift from virtual to in-classroom learning, students are going to be even more overwhelmed and less reliable sources of school information. Outside resources that reduce the burden of synchronizing teachers, parents, and their own schoolwork not only helps students succeed, but ensures that parents and educators can stay focused on bridging learning gaps that emerged over the past year.
Preventing Family Burnout
Almost two-thirds (66%) of parents with children in grades kindergarten through twelve report that an adult in their household is providing extra educational support to their kids. Given the levels of burnout seen among children and their families, this simply isn’t a sustainable approach, particularly as parents return to the office and children return to school. Dedicated family time is only going to become rarer as life returns to “normal,” and the home will need to once again be a safe space where families can relax, bond, and recharge together. Parents acting as the “bad guy” that’s stressed about their children’s schoolwork will only undermine that precious time. Taking action to reduce the entire family unit’s anxieties about academics will ensure that children have the tools to thrive in school and that parents can focus on keeping their families safe and happy as everyone adapts to new routines.
Giving Children the Resources to Succeed
Homework Helpers is here to be a resource for students and their families as they work together to navigate in-person learning. Rather than focusing on traditional academic support, our team of educators and counselors teach children essential skills like time management, prioritization, and organization so that kids can learn more effectively while building self-confidence. Each Homework Helper connects with the child to understand their schoolwork and create an individualized homework plan that keeps the student organized, and their parents in the loop. Less stress, more learning, better outcomes for families.
Are your children returning to in-person learning? Or just want to finish off the school year right?
Set them on the path to success by booking a session with Homework Helpers today!