The status of your child’s school may remain up in the air, but as a parent, you might have already decided that you don’t trust returning your angel to a traditional public model just yet. You still need to take charge of your child’s education — could virtual learning answer your prayers?
Absolutely. Although it wasn’t mainstream until recently, online learning has long offered a meaningful alternative to students who travel frequently or whose physical disabilities made attending public school problematic. With the novel coronavirus pandemic still raging, it may provide parents with their best bet for peace of mind for the 2020-21 year. Here’s what you need to know about virtual education before signing your little one up to learn.
1. You Can Get a Top-Notch Education Virtually
You might have heard horror stories about online learning that make you anxious to return your children to the classroom. However, keep in mind that many districts had to scramble to switch to this educational format on the fly. Online teaching requires a different skill set than the traditional lecture hall, like learning to communicate clearly while expressing empathy in a virtual setting.
However, schools that have offered distance learning for years provide excellence in education despite the nontraditional delivery method. One way to make sure your learner gets the support they need is to enroll them in an accredited online school with a proven track record of success with this modality.
2. Your Child Can Attend Public School Online
Did you think that attending a virtual academy meant shelling out a ton of cash for tuition? Erase that idea from your mindset, please. You can find accredited online public schools, and as a bonus, you know that your child earns an equivalent diploma as they would in a traditional classroom.
3. You Can Enjoy Unparalleled Involvement
Before, if you wanted to check in on your child’s classroom, you had to phone the school in advance and perhaps squeeze into a too-small desk to observe. With online learning, you can pop in and watch your angel’s progress when you take a coffee break from your work responsibilities across the hall.
Most online teachers will provide their preferred contact method and hours available with their syllabi. It doesn’t get any more convenient than shooting a quick text to check on little Johnny’s participation.
4. Your Kids Will Learn Time-Management
When your child attends a traditional school, bells tell them when to stand up, eat and buckle down and study. They receive operant conditioning, much like Pavlov’s dogs.
However, when your child attends virtual education, they need to become more active participants in managing their daily schedule. They may have to schedule a time to participate in live lectures with slots for completing outside assignments. They must balance their study hours while leaving room for eating and exercising — a skill with immediate real-world applicability.
5. You Don’t Spend All Day on the Computer
You might think that your child’s physical development and motor skills will suffer in the virtual classroom. However, your little one won’t spend all day on the computer. Many science teachers will assign experiments you can do with household objects, like using baking soda and vinegar to make a volcano. Their physical education teacher may require them to do 50 jumping jacks or walk or run a mile.
6. There’s Still a Social Component
Online teachers understand that children need to develop emotionally and socially as well as academically. Many online schools contain classroom discussion rooms that allow for interaction within clear and precise rules for behavior. If your child is shy, they can practice voicing their opinions in a less-intimidating manner than raising their hand and speaking in front of a group.
7. Your Little May Participate in Extracurriculars
Many students participate in extracurricular activities to improve their chances of college acceptance and develop their passions. Some parents hesitate to enroll their children in virtual schools out of fear that they will miss out on them.
However, many online academies offer virtual clubs such as yearbook and student government. Some partner with nearby traditional schools to offer sports that their enrollment numbers don’t support. Your little learner can also participate in community volunteer activities that look impressive on university applications.
8. Online Learning Prepares Children for a Changing World
Finally, while COVID-19 will eventually cause less fear due to a vaccine, history tells humanity that future pandemics will arise. Accordingly, expect technology to continue to evolve to allow for productivity while reducing the spread of infectious disease.
Virtual education prepares your children for a changing world by giving them the technological skills they need to get future jobs. It also teaches them invaluable soft skills, like time management and problem-solving. As humanity moves toward greater dependency on connected devices, your children will have the savvy to navigate this new landscape.
Learn All You Need to Know About Virtual Education
Now that you have the facts about virtual education, you can make the most informed decision for your little angel. You owe it to them to provide a top-notch education via a safe and effective method.