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In the last year, the use of online learning has increased dramatically. While online technology provides some amazing learning tools, one of the biggest problems it presents is keeping kids focused on the task at hand and not getting distracted. We take a look at ways to help children stay focused when doing schoolwork online.
Increasing use of online technology
Prior to the global pandemic, school and homework was increasingly being done online but the lockdown meant a huge growth in the development and use of online learning tools.
Why kids are distracted
The ever present and expanding online world, and the increasingly sophisticated design of sites and apps that reward regular and repeat visits, along with increased internet usage, create an environment where children are constantly exposed to addictive content.
All this doesn’t take into account how easy it is for children to be distracted – and how easily a developing brain can get bored!
Another recent study shows that even at school, students are checking devices for non-class purposes for more than a fifth of their class time and the main reasons given were to stay connected and fight boredom.
So, for a variety of reasons it’s difficult for children to stay focused on their schoolwork when having easy access to online entertainment. Parents, in the face of this, are looking for ways to help encourage their children to avoid distractions and complete their schoolwork.
School Time from NortonLifeLock
Despite your and your child’s best efforts, the draw of non-school work might be too strong. The good news is that there is help out there. Parental Controls have been specifically created to manage and keep an eye on your kids’ online activity.
Previously parental controls allowed parents to block access to the internet on their children’s devices to facilitate some screen downtime, but the increase in online learning for school means this is not always appropriate.
That’s where the new parental control tool available in Norton Family and select Norton 360 plans, School Time, comes in. School Time lets you give the green light to sites your child needs to access for school, while blocking those that are distracting them from it.
You can schedule access to certain categories of sites during the times you want them to focus on school. You can also use School Time to block sites that are inappropriate or unnecessary at all times, giving you peace of mind about your child’s safety when using the internet.
Non-tech tips for staying on task
Every child is different, but there are a number of things you can do to help keep them on task.
Put aside a particular time of day for schoolwork or homework to be done, avoiding as many distractions as possible. For instance, don’t schedule schoolwork when the dog is due to be walked or around the time that a parent or sibling arrives home for the day. Ensure that all members of the household know that the time allocated is not to be disrupted.
Find a quiet, organised space for learning. It doesn’t have to be a desk but just make sure that there is a power supply nearby.
Break down their learning tasks into a checklist. Some children benefit from being able to tick things off to see their progress and what is yet to be done.
You might like to look at implementing an age-appropriate reward system – you will no doubt know what rewards will be most effective for your child.
School Time is perfect for helping your child focus on homework but is also ideal if your child needs to do their schooling from home. While we hopefully won’t go back to lockdowns and online schooling, it is always a possibility – and one worth preparing for.
Schools are continuing to develop their online learning offerings, so it’s inevitable that your child will complete more work online than ever before. School Time from NortonLifeLock is a great way to help them focus, so that they complete their work on time, while also being able to enjoy some downtime on their device too.
To find out more visit nz.norton.com.
Written by Kidspot NZ for NortonLifeLock.