Arizona Parent & Caretaker Toolkit for Distance Learning
Welcome parents and caretakers of Arizona K-12 public education students! We know the distance-learning environment has been challenging to navigate. You likely have questions about how best to support your child’s academic success.
We hope this toolkit and roadmap will provide you with online resources and ways to better communicate with your child’s educators during this unprecedented academic year.
What questions should I be asking my child’s teacher?
Communication between parents and educators has always been critical to the academic success of students. In the distance learning environment, it is important that parents and teachers talk to each other on a regular basis. You should work with your child’s teacher to get clear expectations on how you will communicate this academic year.
Additionally, you may need to engage your child’s school principal if the teacher doesn’t have answers for your questions.
What technology tools, resources and apps do you recommend for my child?
What assessments do you use to help us know where my child needs further instruction?
What should my child do if they finish their work quickly or if they are struggling with content?
What is the appropriate level of support to offer my child with their schoolwork?
What's the plan for grading, attendance and testing? How will feedback be provided?
How do teachers plan to make online learning more fun/keep kids engaged?
Is my student required to be online with their camera on?
What are accommodations for students with special needs, or students learning English?
What is the policy for online school attendance and how is our school handling absences?
What activities, extracurricular events, and special classes will be available
What, if any, will be the common online learning platform*?
*Every school district and charter school has the ability to choose which online platform they use for distance learning. We recommend asking your child’s teacher and/or school principal which online platform their school is using and what resources they have available to help you navigate the platform.
What resources are available to help me support my child’s learning at home?
Common Sense Media has compiled a wonderful resource, Wide Open School, to help parents, students and educators navigate the distance learning environment. The platform features a free and open collection of online learning experiences and referrals to social and community services for PreK-12 kids and families in English and Spanish.
ALL In Education - Parent Educator Academy: A free training course for parents to better support their children in distance learning, additionally parents receive in-demand skills to become job ready.
Arizona SciTech Resource Portal: Browse thousands science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) such as activities, virtual tours and videos with the ability to filter by age, topic and resource type.
Arizona State Libraries: Access the Digital Arizona Library for Arizona resource topics, historic newspapers, digital content and collections. Arizonans can also explore thousands of online articles and images from popular magazines, scholarly journals, current newspapers and other reference works through their public library websites.
Connect-Arizona: Arizona Free WiFi Map - Search for locations in Arizona that provide free public WiFi hotspots at public libraries, schools, businesses, and other sites. Free tech support available.
Cox Digital Academy: Families, educators, community leaders and students can access information regarding computer literacy tips, educational videos, tutorials and games.
Parent and Family Digital Learning Guide: This guide aims to help all parents and caregivers, including those who have limited experience with digital tools, those who are expert with these tools, and anywhere in between. Each section starts with foundational pieces and builds from there.
My child is struggling emotionally with the lack of social interaction, how can I support my child’s mental health during distance learning?
We have heard from many parents that the lack of social interaction during the pandemic has taken an emotional toll on their children’s social and emotional well-being. It is important for parents to support the Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) of their children during this time.
SEL is the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. Below are some resources that could help parents do this effectively.