There has been a lot of buzz going around about parents being worried that their child(ren) won’t be “ready” for the next school year, given all the distance learning- or lack-there-of. I cannot speak for all schools, but I am here to set the record straight.
The reality of it is that your child’s developmental goals may very well need to be adjusted and the world just needs to accept that. What were considered developmental standards to meet by certain times before quarantine are standards of the past. Things have changed. Our timelines have been jacked up, and with valid reason. Rest assured, the children will be met where they are developmentally when we are reunited, whenever and wherever that may be. No child will be left behind or passed over in attempts to “catch up”. One of the main values of the Reggio approach is that each child learns in their own time and space and we will continue to practice and honor this when on campus school resumes.
This goes without saying, but the children are humans just like us. I think as adults we sometimes fall guilty of forgetting that while we are wrapped up in all of the adult-sized stresses. When the kids express their stress in forms of tantrums, we (speaking as a heavily-involved Aunt here) tend to immediately think to ourselves “What are you crying about? You don’t even have bills.” Or “Are you seriously yelling at me because I want you to nap? For your own good? Are you joking? Let’s trade for two hours.”
No, the children don’t have complicated financial responsibilities like us. However, when you shrink the world down to their size, their child-size stresses are just as relevant. They are dealing with their own quarantine trauma and confusion- in their own ways. You may see it in the form of tantrum triggers you thought they grew out of, resisting daily simple cooperation, not wanting to be on Zoom calls, or maybe even having more accidents than they were a few weeks ago. It’s the equivalent of our adult-sized worries shrunken down into child-sized hurdles, but unlike them, we have the ability to deal with it through talking with our adult peers, researching, somehow getting a jog in, or, my goodness, having a freakin’ drink!
As your family maneuvers this trying time, it is important to not stress about them “falling off track” with numbers and letters. Instead, when/if they send you these signals, tend to their emotions. At the end of the day, they will not go their whole lives not knowing how to read and write sight words, or associate ten beads with the number 10. They may, however, struggle social-emotionally down the line if their mental health is not made a priority. This is not to say ignore the academics completely- definitely keep trying. Create a list of things your child is academically struggling with, meet them where they are and gently push. If they push back one day, drop it. Trust and believe that we will pick up where you leave off academically, partner.
Here are two easy-read articles I found which address “Pandemic Regression”. I realize that the term “regression” may sound harsh, but it’s a reality many parents and guardians are facing right now. Both links suggest helpful tips for how to go about navigating your child’s recent coping mechanisms.
That being said, use our website as a resource for when you need it. Go check it out. It has our lesson plans, our group portfolio entries, our blog, our YouTube link, songs the kids like, activities, invitations, our classroom management tips and the link to our Weekly Interest Check-In Surveys! We conveniently put all of it on a website so that you can access them in a one-stop shop for when you want to access it! Need a few minutes to get some work done or get a few minutes to just chill? Play that YouTube playlist, friend! Need some educational ideas for your kids to do solo or for family bonding? Hit up our lesson plans! Need activities tailored to your kid’s specific interests? Fill out the Weekly Interest Check-In Survey and you’ll get one in your Email the following week! We are here to help.
Love you a lot,