This pandemic caught us all unawares, and as such, there were no manuals. We are dealing with everything as though we are encountering it for the first time because we are. Students have been looking at their teachers to lead the way, a factor that is causing a bit of anxiety in some teachers.
How can the school support students through the pandemic? There is not too much one can do, but the little that is possible could mean a world of difference.
Here are seven changes that could make a student’s life more bearable.
Offer to Help at Home Where Possible
Traditionally, schools are for learning and the staff is hardly that engaged with what happens after students leave the premises. that is now being revised, especially for families that were already showing strain pre-COVID. Where students express their inability to study because they have no food or have been thrown out of their homes, schools may have to come in and help.
Some students lack the required tools for online study, and schools could come up with payment plans with outlets selling these gadgets so that students can learn more effectively. For students, they can seek help from an Essay Editing Service if they are completely unable to do their own assignments in time. Times are hard enough already, so making it easier on yourself by asking for help with schoolwork from a professional writer leaves you open to doing other good things for your mental health.
Being Conscious of Asynchronous Classes
With online classes and students being dispersed all over the world now, it helps as a tutor to bear in mind that not everyone is in the same time zone. You may want to time your classes so that those in places far removed from your zone are able to attend too.
At this point, it helps to loosen rules regarding assignments too, since not everyone has the ideal situation at home. If they aren’t able to submit an assignment in time because they were probably working to help feed the family, a little leniency goes a long way.
Let them Know they can Reach out Whenever they Need
It has become clear with the pandemic and lockdown that some homes are indeed the mouth of a shark. Some students are happier at school where they have their peers but get depressed at home, and being locked out of school makes survival hard. They could use someone to talk to when it gets hard at home, which is why you may want to let them know that they can talk to you on matters unrelated to school. Remind them to out their mental health first and ask them to find a person to talk to if that’s not you. this, surprisingly, is not obvious to everyone.
Talk about the Pandemic
Many opt to neglect to tackle the elephant in the room, a factor that makes it even worse since no one knows how much longer the pandemic will be with us. It helps to talk about it and to allow students to express their feelings, fears, and expectations. That said, others are a little overwhelmed by the pandemic, and even talking about it makes them more anxious, so you may want to ask if everyone is comfortable and safe speaking about it. If they aren’t, assurance doesn’t hurt.
Let them Know they Can Talk to Each Other
Some students may find it hard asking for phone numbers from their peers or asking to be included in WhatsApp groups, and this is an area a tutor can help. You could ask those willing to be part of a larger conversation amongst each other to offer their numbers so that even the least talkative find an outlet for their frustrations.
Start and Support Art Movements
Arts are now a saving grace since kids are finding the time to express themselves creatively. Tutors can encourage them to start creating and sharing their art with each other, so they have something keeping them busy during this unpredictable time. Schools are able to come together to sponsor events that could still happen online, including acting, poetry, writing competitions, and any art project that encourages students to think of anything other than lockdowns. Online competitions don’t need too much preparation, and they are likely to stay even after the pandemic. So, why not start them early?
Offer Remedial Classes
Some students will miss class, not because of their indolence, but for reasons beyond their control. It is human to repeat these classes so they can be up to speed, especially if they ask. Also, offering those with a slower learning curve ensures that no one’s left behind.
We stay Hopeful
One way we can all stay hopeful is by using positive language. While it is not business as usual, we cannot stay in doomed spirits just because we are in a pandemic. Using positive language like, “when we resume classes” maintains some level of normalcy that we could all use quite frankly. That said, you as a teacher should prioritize self-care too. We often give so much that we forget we can only pour from a full cup.