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The Changing Face of School

Are Questions the Answer?: Inquiry based learning

Every year is different

Each new school year builds upon the previous. It builds a platform for the next year. Students strive to learn new material and skills. Schools have curriculum to follow. Teaching still requires organization and instruction. Whether learning is masked or not, it is still learning.

The parent's role has evolved. They are in increasingly in charge of creating and managing the home learning environment. They have to enforce study rules. They have to defferentiate between play and study time.

tree of knowledge

Learning is Developmental

Reading and writing is a developmental process. So is math. When learning to read, we start with letter recognition. We read stories aloud to our children, we point at pictures, and and we try to keep it interesting. With math we start by counting, and continue building from there.

As children grow into teens, reading evolves. It involves deeper comprehension, making connections across content areas, and asking questions, and engaging in abstract and critical thinking.

Parents are our first teachers

Here are some tips for supporting better learning at home:

  • Read every day.
  • Set up a study environment, and set a regular time to do school work.
  • For younger students, have them read aloud. Avoid too many corrections. Help them sound out words.
  • Ask them to predict what will happen next, even if you have read the story 10 times.
  • Mistakes and struggle are an essential part of learning. They are not intentional.
  • Take a deep breath if you find yourself getting frustrated with a child. Be patient. Avoid anger. Be ready to adapt.

Technology is your co-teacher

Zoom and other video chat programs have become the dominant mode of instruction. Some parts of each lesson may be in the form of prerecorded lessons. Two apps favored by teachers include Flipgrid and SeeSaw

Google is your friend

Don't know something? Learn to ask Google. You will get better and better with practice.

Google Classroom

Google Classroom is an extremely popular learning management system used by schools. Every student has a protected, private email. They can see and submit assignments online. 

Check out this Parent's Guide to Google Classroom.

Read The Parent Challenge on Rick's Blog for an in-depth treatment of this topic. You will find additional teaching tips and methods.


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