Questions and answers about studies at home in Estonia
Who should organize studies at home?
All aspects of studies at home shall be addressed to the school. Each school organizes studies at home according to their possibilities, all of them provide necessary information directly to students and parents.
How to motivate and keep the attention on schoolwork when studying at home?
Arrange a steady daily schedule (waking up, studying, breaks, exchange of information). Explain the new situation to your child, remember to include the expectations to a student who studies at home. If possible, take a couple of check-ups during the day.
In case your child needs supervision at home, arrange it with the help of family members. If that is not possible, contact your local government for further support.
How to organize long-distance studies in a multiple children family when access to digital appliances is limited?
Technical arrangements for long-distance studies are organized by the family. Schools provide information and have obligation to organize studies so that all students, despite their family’s technical capabilities, can and are able to participate.
Are studies at home organized according to timetables? Do students need to have continued online presence during the studies?
Terms, structure and other organizational aspects of studies at home are organized by schools. Studies at home do not mean that the student must keep constant online presence through-out the school-day. Studies will take place mostly at home and suitable and helpful online environments can be used to support the studies. Schools will provide necessary access to suitable online environments.
Do teachers explain subjects to students during studies at home? Can students ask additional questions?
During studies at home all teachers will do their best to provide necessary information, including study materials and support materials to all the students. As usual, students will have questions and for sure most of them are similar among all the students, therefore we recommend using online environments for questions and answers and sharing. By using common online networks and /or online environments more students can benefit from someone’s question and the teacher’s response. We also recommend keeping close contact between students and among parents. For simple communication already commonly used networks and platforms are easiest for all parties.
How many hours per day should be planned for studies? How to plan the activities?
We recommend setting up a daily schedule, that considers the students’ capability to focus and keep attention. In general, the time for studies should be similar to study schedules used at school.
How are organized support systems (speech therapy, special pedagogy, support teacher etc.) for children with special educational needs?
During studies at home all parents have an additional role as a teacher. This new role may be confusing and difficult. For support we recommend contacting the schools support personnel and agree individually upon the possibilities and schedule of necessary support. When that is not possible for some reason, Rajaleidja network will provide guidance and support: study counselors are available in chat at www.rajaleidja.ee during workdays from 9:00 to 17:00. contact 735 0700, contact of local offices can be found HERE. The support is provided in Estonian, in Russian and in English.
Do I need to take up new online environments and create new accounts in social media?
Communication between school and students is organized by the school, schools can help with finding suitable solutions and platforms as well. For daily communication we recommend to keep using already existing and familiar networks and platforms. It is important to ensure information to all parties, taking into account everyone’s possibilities.
How can I support my child during the studies?
By talking to your child and his/her teacher and considering previous grades and feedback, define the volume and aspects in which your child needs support. Plan a daily schedule for studies, rest, sleep and free time activities, including physical activities.
If possible, keep in contact with your child during study time. Encourage your child to ask questions. When your child needs additional support which you can not provide, contact the teacher and plan the support activities together.
Include your child in agreeing upon rules at home, support your child in following the rules agreed with school. Keep an eye on progress with schoolwork and deadlines.
It is important to have breaks from studies. During the breaks students should have more practical and physical activities, not spend the breaks in their smartphones. Check out some good solutions for that from Go Noodle!, Just Dance, Liikuma Kutsuv Kool.