Mom and Dad First: Keeping a Parent-First Perspective During Distance Learning
Everything has changed. Weeks ago, you dropped your child off at school five days each week. You went to work. You picked them up at 3:20. You made dinner. They went to bed. There was a schedule… a plan.
Now everything is different. Your children stay in their PJs for most of the day. Mediating disagreements and monitoring screen time is becoming your full-time job. On top of that, you may be feeling responsible for making sure that your children are learning during this time.
We get it. This time is challenging.
Among the stress of this shift to distance learning, we encourage moms and dads to be parents first. While it’s important to support your children with the time and tools they need for remote learning, parents can allow the teacher to focus on the results.
Here are five key areas of focus that can help you keep a parent-first perspective.
You may be feeling like your child’s mom AND his teacher during this time, but remember that your primary relationship is parent. When the line between mom and teacher blurs, contact your child’s teacher to come up with solutions. It’s the teacher’s job to focus on the results so that you can be your child’s mom.
There are a lot of emotions bubbling up during this time for children. Fear, frustration, and anxiety are normal and expected during uncertainty. Allow for sharing emotions at home. Listen and reassure, teaching children that we control our emotions, not pandemics or interruptions, and that God has good plans for each of us.
No, we didn’t choose this interruption to our lifestyle and routine, but there are some key things that we can learn. Help children identify how they are learning the skills of critical thinking and problem-solving; communication; collaboration; creativity; innovation; and trust in God. They’ll look back someday and remember those skills. Help them to see how this time can lead to growth.
There are some new things to grumble about lately, but there is so much to be thankful for. This is an unparalleled time for all to learn to recognize blessings such as: “Today, I am safe, have food, a roof over my head, and a cup of tea in my hand. My child gets to continue her education. We have the technology to allow us to see our family, even while we can’t visit in person.” Take turns sharing what you are thankful for around the dinner table, or start a gratitude jar as a family, collecting sheets of paper that list the little blessings each day.
Appreciate your children and the potential God has built into each one. There may never again be a time like this where you spend so much time with your children day-in and day-out. You have probably learned a great deal about how your children learn or how they engage with their friends and teachers at school. Step back and allow yourself to reflect on your children’s God-given potential. Reflect on the beauty of their creativity, their love for learning, or their thirst for adventure.
At PCA, we see partnering with parents as a high and important calling. In this time, partnering with parents means that we’re committed to helping you be parents first. When difficulties arise with school, teachers are ready to receive feedback and troubleshoot so that you and your spouse can be mom and dad first.
PCA parents: Are you in need of additional support during this time? We’re creating options for you to receive the help you need.
- Click here to visit the Veracross Parent Portal. In the resources section, you’ll find a link to our Give Help/Get Help survey that will allow us to connect you with the help you need. You’ll also find a link to the PCA Tech Exchange, where you can give or receive tech support.
- Within the Veracross Parent Portal, you can also find contact info for your child’s teacher. Email is the preferred method for contacting teachers with questions or concerns.
- We’re eager to support you in prayer. If your family has any specific prayer requests, submit them to the Leadership Team using this link.