How Remote Learning Affected Early Childhood Development

22/09/2022

Remote learning allowed children to continue their formal learning despite hard lockdowns. However, remote learning might have also affected children’s health, enjoyment and overall development. 

Remote learning and early childhood development 

First, remote learning limited the children’s offline experiences. Because they’re stuck at home, they were forced to endure the boredom of at-home learning especially if it’s been going for hours. Instead of seeing a different kind of environment, children saw less variety in their surroundings and experiences. This caused boredom even if the home was filled with a variety of toys and rich educational materials. 

Second, remote learning might have caused physical inactivity. Children’s physical activities became limited, which affected their overall physical and brain development. That’s because children require a variety of real-world experiences and interactions to help their brains form crucial neural pathways. At home, children weren’t able to interact with others of the same age. The interactions became limited and as a result, each playtime became less fun and engaging. Because children found playtime to be less delightful, they have become less willing to take part in group activities. They might have become too used to individual playtime and carried it over to the present day (even if it’s the usual learning setting already). 

Fortunately, one benefit is that children were able to spend more time with their parents and family. Parents also became more involved in their children’s learning and development. This has raised awareness about how children develop and how important the role of parents is. With this deeper involvement and better awareness, parents have become better equipped in supporting their children’s learning and development. 

Remote learning is still better than fully halting the children’s learning progress. Whether remote learning has slowed down that progress or not, it still provided some benefits to both children and parents. It was also a good time to find out whether remote learning works and what its shortcomings are. In the future, the approach could be improved and better complement the setting at the early learning centre or big school.