Sadness, loneliness, anxiety, and depression have become commonplace today because of COVID-19’s adverse effects on our way of life. It has taken away many things we once enjoyed, especially the freedom to go out and be around friends and loved ones. It has limited the things we can do and has come short of cutting us off from the rest of the world.
While reopening has been attempted in different places, different virus variants keep popping up, the most recent of which is the deadlier Delta variant. These new virus strains have caused recent surges, which forced governments to bring back stricter COVID-19 protocols.
Before this, folks were already easing into life before the pandemic, only to be taken back to the new normal. While science and technology take us two steps forward, the deadly variants keep bringing us one step back.
One of the people groups that have been greatly affected by all this instability is the students. Under normal circumstances, it’s already challenging for parents and educators to inspire and motivate students to perform academically. COVID-19 made it even harder. Both parents and teachers aren’t just dealing with unmotivated students. They are now faced with the task of boosting their morale so that they don’t sink into depression.
What Parents and Educators Can Do to Boost Student Morale amid a Pandemic
What good is it if students are enrolled in the top academic institutions or taking up courses such as the most reliable online grant writing classes if they are not motivated to live out their potential? What can parents and educators do to spark inspiration and help students regain a sense of purpose amid all this uncertainty and isolation?
Give greater emphasis on hard work and not high marks
There’s nothing wrong with getting high marks in school. In fact, it is commended by a lot of people. But understand that it shouldn’t define a student. Instead of focusing on grades, teach them the value of hard work. Instilling this value shows them the importance of character over success as defined by the world.
Focus on collaboration and not competition
The educational system is set up to pit students against each other to — supposedly — drive them to work harder. However, not all students are motivated by competition, but almost everyone works well within a team setting.
Instead of making students compete for high grades and recognition, create a culture of teamwork and collaboration. Doing so can help them work together and assist each other to become better. This makes all the difference, especially now that the pandemic has limited human contact and social interaction.
Help them find the right peers and mentors who can motivate them
In creating a collaborative culture, parents and teachers should also help students find a small group of people they can walk with daily. These can be their peers or other teachers. They are the ones who can help them with their schoolwork and provide moral support. They can push them to be what they can be despite the present circumstances.
Don’t confine their education to the kitchen table
We understand that the pandemic has restricted us from going out in public and mingling with other people. But that doesn’t mean that we can no longer step out for some much-needed time outdoors.
Break the monotony of working indoors and spend some time under the sun. If your city or state allows people to go out to the park or other open spaces, take them there to get some work done, even for a few hours. Be sure to observe proper COVID-19 protocols when outdoors. A little change in scenery can help spark inspiration, creativity, and drive in a person.
Give them a little wiggle room for failure
In the real world, perfection does not exist. So why force students to get perfect GPAs? So they can get into any university they like? Not only is this notion of excellence misleading, but it can also be damaging to a person. Life is full of risks and surprises. And more often than not, people will make mistakes along the way. Nobody’s perfect.
So instead of focusing on perfection and being uptight about it, give them some room to learn from their failures and shortcomings. This will help build resilience and perseverance in them — two important things that will serve them very well in life.
Allow them some time to answer why they do what they do
Lastly, students are plagued with a lot of questions about life and the future. Help assuage their fears and anxiety by bringing them back to their purpose. This entails plenty of time for self-discovery and lots of introspective moments.
Without this sense of purpose, life becomes one long routine they think they need to endure instead of an exciting journey of continuous discovery. Help them discover the meaning of their existence and direct them toward its fulfillment.
Finding the right motivation to keep you going may be tough to do on your own. Imagine how difficult it is for younger and more inexperienced people to motivate themselves throughout all this. This is why parents and teachers should help each other in supporting kids today. At this point, we all need to work together to make other people’s lives better, including that of our students.