Pediatrician, mom offer advice on how to navigate virtual learning

'It's going to be challenging,' mother of 3 says
Posted at 8:09 AM, Aug 21, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-21 08:09:17-04

BOCA RATON, Fla. — Virtual learning is not easy. That's one thing on which all parents can seem to agree.

Jen Vogel is a mother of three, with a fifth-grader, third-grader and a preschooler.

"It's going to be challenging," she said. "It's what we have to do. I have stations set up for them, so they each have their own space and own supplies."

Vogel is somewhat of a virtual school expert at this point, in these times. She did it this spring. Vogel said the competition lessons with multiple children can be a challenge.

"When they are on virtually at the same time, the easiest thing to do is either have the kids with headphones on, or in my case, I keep them in different rooms, because they will easily get distracted with one another, and then I'm just running back and forth," she said.

Dr. Tara Harris, a pediatrician on staff at West Boca Medical Center, said maintaining focus is paramount.

"We are all navigating these waters as best as we can," she said.

Harris said maintaining focus is paramount.

"You're at home. It's easy to lie around in bed or hang around on the sofa," she said. "Your brain, if you are in a space where you are you know that you are going to learn -- you are sitting at a table or sitting at a desk -- you are more likely to be able to focus."

She also said understand the challenges of the current situation.

"Especially with multiple kids maybe in multiple grades, make sure everybody needs a break and just try to bite off small pieces, because it can definitely be overwhelming," Harris said.

Harris said be open to what the future holds.

"There will definitely be kids who need to repeat a grade, and there will be parents who prefer it," she said. "In the end, it's all about what is best for their child."

Vogel also said, depending on a child's age, talk honestly.

"As much as I try not to talk negatively about it, I do try to keep open communications, so that I know what they are feeling and I can help them through that process," she said.