Here are four easy ways to help kids pay attention
Distance learning has been challenging for many kids, for different reasons. But for children who struggle with focus, it can present new obstacles. Coping with focus problems under these circumstances, no doubt, can be frustrating for you and your child. You may wonder how you’re going to get through it. Below are some tips on how you can solve common online learning issues.
Problem: Your child keeps getting up and moving around.
Solution: Schedule frequent brain breaks. Let them do deep breathing exercises or have them run up and down the stairs a few times. Then, make sure seating is comfortable, says sports physiotherapist Jinkle Joy Arandia. If your child slouches, she recommends adding a cushion and a footrest to improve stability.
Problem: Your child is easily distracted.
Solution: Create a dedicated, organized learning space. “Reduce distractions when your child is completing schoolwork—this includes noise and clutter,” says research scientist Dr. Linda Carling, in an article by Johns Hopkins School of Education. Experts say that consistency is one of the keys, especially for online learning, because it signals your child that it’s time to learn and be engaged.
Problem: Your kid fidgets with the computer.
Solution: Provide a tool such as a squishy ball or fidget toy to keep hands busy. “Fidget toys allow the child to experience movement without having to actually get up and move around,” explains William DeMeo, Ph.D., in his book When Nothing Else Works. “Manipulating a fidget toy provides the tactile stimulation the mind is craving, which can calm the child and allow her to stay on task.”
Problem: Your child complains of headaches or fatigue.
Solution: Place the screen at eye level to avoid neck strain, according to ophthalmologist Dr. Michael Lagamayo. And teach your child to follow the 20-20-20 rule: Every 20 minutes of gadget use, rest your eyes for 20 seconds by looking at something 20 feet away.