FVSU Cooperative Extension suggests tips for parents creating virtual learning environments at home

by Russell Boone

Posted on Apr 08, 2020

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On April 1, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp ordered that all K-12 schools in the state remain closed for the duration of the academic year due to the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic.

Despite not being able to physically hold classes in buildings, many, if not all, school districts have switched to online or virtual curriculums, so students can complete classwork from home. 

To ensure students can concentrate on completing schoolwork with a minimal amount of distraction, Kena Torbert, family life specialist for Fort Valley State University’s College of Agriculture, Family Sciences and Technology, provides some tips for parents and guardians.

“As the parent of a 14-year-old, I know the main concern is to make sure the student understands and completes schoolwork, even in the comfort zone of the home,” Torbert said. “The student must realize the change in venue is not an extended vacation. Homework must be completed,” the FVSU family life specialist said. 

Torbert provides a few pointers for creating an effective virtual school environment.

Prepare a work station.

Locate a well-lit place where children can work on assignments with easy access to school equipment such as computer, pens, pencils and books.

Maintain a daily schedule.

Encourage children to get up on time, bathe, get dressed and eat breakfast just as if it were a regular school day. Make sure students work on assignments using the block schedule established by many schools. Set time aside for breaks and lunch and allow students to work virtually with classmates on assignments.

Keep in contact with teachers.

Communicate with teachers. Keep them abreast of the student’s progress, comprehension and completion of assignments.

Allow for “Me” time

Give students time to recharge. Let them disconnect from online learning programs and allow them time for listening to music, physical activity or socialization.

For more information about activities or methods to use learning virtually, contact Torbert at 478-825-6573 or


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