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Monday, July 22, 2024
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The COVID comeback

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Helping kids who have fallen behind during the pandemic remote learning period

Kids are going back to school. It’s a simple sentence, but it means a whole lot. To the kids, their families and society at large.

Our lives were hit with an unprecedented upheaval, but kids back in school means the worst of the storm is behind us. It may not be entirely smooth sailing, but we are at least in control of the boat.

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And that’s great news, because nearly two months is a long time for a kid to go without school. Repetition is the key to a child’s learning, and an interruption that long has more than a few parents worried.

Worried that their child is falling behind, worried that they won’t catch up, worried that repeating a year is the only option.

But should you be worried?

We know kids are good at learning. They’re fantastic at it. They’re so good at it that I bet they’ve picked up more than a few things you wish they hadn’t. When they get back to school, they’ll be in the ideal learning environment surrounded by great teachers prepared

Falling behind at school can cause stress for parents and children alike.

to help your children get back up to speed. For most kids, it won’t even be an issue.

Still a bit worried? That’s ok. Next time you’re picking them up from school, speak with their teacher and find out what programs your school can offer.

They may be able to recommend Reading Recovery and other similar programs which let students spend extra time on problem areas. If your child hasn’t done much reading during the remote learning period and is struggling to get back into it, a program like this one may be exactly what they need.

Many schools will be able to offer some form of in-class learning support for your child, allowing them the extra attention they might need. Extra one on one time with a teacher’s aide might be exactly what your child needs to get back up to speed.

In some cases, particularly for older children heading into busy exam periods, a tutor could be the way to go. Similarly, to learning support, a tutor can allow your child one on one time that could make the difference. Tutors could be anyone from experts and ex-teachers through to a University student or a high-performing older student at the school. 

Perhaps your school has a buddy system or a program for younger students to team up with older students in supervised study sessions. Having an older student to help can ensure younger kids focus and apply themselves. This could also be done with an older sibling or family friend at home.

Straight back into it. For most kids the lost time won’t be a problem. PHOTO: Giovanni Portelli

The most important thing to do is speak with the teacher. If this remote learning period has taught us anything it is how important teachers are.

It’s not easy to do what they do, but they’re well trained and they care about your kids. They’re experts in this, they know the signs to look for, and they’ll be able to tell if your kid needs help. Speak with them and together you can come up with a plan to get your child back on track.


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