As parents of young children, we have all heard the recommendation to limit screen time as much as possible. Although some screen time can be educational, we also know that too much of it may have a negative effect on a child’s development and overall well-being. As a result, we do our best to monitor our children's usage. However, this can be especially difficult, especially during challenging times such as now!
As a result, we have put together a collection of offline ideas for grades PK-9 to support families in engaging their students in offline ways. Click on the pictures below to find the collection for each age range. Make sure to check out not only the age group that applies to your son or daughter, but the others as well. Many ideas can easily be easily adjusted to accommodate different ages!
Consider 2 to 3 hours of academic work a day for reading, writing, math, religion, social studies and science. Special areas such as physical education and/or art can be conducted at a later time or scheduled in as breaks. You may feel this is not enough time but consider the following: You will not be calculating lunch, class changes and special area classes into your day. Support your children as best you can during this crazy time by reducing distractions and helping them work / grow towards more and more independence. Be flexible!
Consider 3 to 4 hours of academic work for this ages level. Students this age will be a little more independent and will need parents more as a facilitator than a hands on teacher. As with younger students, be sure to schedule in breaks for your student. Transitioning between subjects is a good time to allow a brief stretch break or snack break. Reduce distractions. Students at this age have access to more electronic devices. Unless being used for school, televisions, phones and game consoles should not be in use.
Consider schooling for 4-5 hours per day. Students this age are even more independent and should be encouraged to take personal responsibility to some degree. As with younger students, schedule breaks, but allow the student some input in time management. This is a great opportunity to teach wise time management practices. Reduce distractions. Students this age are even more distracted by devices than their younger counterparts. Turn phones off and place in a separate room, unless being used for an instructional activity.
Additional Resources for Offline Support
The ABC's of Screen Free Time