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Think people are over estimating the time they spend on ‘learning activities’

(23 Posts)
RHTawneyonabus Mon 18-May-20 10:15:39

IFS study suggest that better-off families are spending nearly 6 hours a day on ‘learning activities’. That’s more then they’d get at school with breaks etc. We are doing nothing like that and I doubt many people are. Think either people are over estimating or ‘learning activities’ is very loosely defined.

www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/may/18/keeping-schools-closed-in-england-will-widen-educational-inequalities-study-ifs

OP’s posts: |
PorpentiaScamander Mon 18-May-20 10:18:34

Most things could be defined as a learning activity. My DC fixed the washing machine. That was learning. Just not something they would learn at school.

MonkeyToesOfDoom Mon 18-May-20 10:20:13

That study, from what I can gather, is self reported data. So anyone could have gone on there and said a load.of bollocks and it'd skew the figures.

Bit like lunch box threads on here filled with 5 year old kids eating Quinoa for lunch, celery sticks for dessert and hand pulled organic yaks milk for a drink.

Randomnessembraced Mon 18-May-20 10:22:57

If learning activities includes practising musical instruments, reading a book, playing lego then yes, my primary aged children are doing 6 hours at least. I would also include drawing outside with chalk as a learning activity for a 5 or 6 year old. Young children learn doing most things, including baking/playing etc. Learning activity also includes me reading a bedtime story and asking comprehension style questions. Many educated parents will do these things naturally and so the gap will widen. Just like plenty of educated parents and or those that value education will set their toddlers up in the bath with letters and little cups to fill through which they will learn early maths and reading skills too. It is children who are not getting any attention or direction who will suffer although of course in the case of older children, some are self motivated.

FlemCandango Mon 18-May-20 10:23:18

My 3 kids are engaged in school work from 8.30 to around 3 with breaks for lunch. Two are autistic and one also has ADHD so routine is really important. I cannot speak for the rest of the country. Me and dh are working from home so have oversight. But as the kids are age 11-15 they are quite self-directed using Google classroom etc. The schools are providing plenty of work for them to do.

Randomnessembraced Mon 18-May-20 10:28:09

This is the more worrying part in that article: "Parents on higher incomes were the most willing to send their children back into the classroom when the lockdown ends, rising to around 50% in the wealthiest quintile. But only a third of those from the poorest 20% of households were in favour." Richer people are more empowered and trust the government more, less swayed by one type of newspaper, more able to read studies/statistics/reports, more able to follow news reports in other countries and understand what is going on there (often due to education and travel) and willing to make up their own mind.

MutteringDarkly Mon 18-May-20 10:28:28

We are and I'm exhausted. School starts online at 8.30 and with a lunch break most activities/tasks are done by 3. There's also 30 mins reading aloud to a grandparent via video call. There's an hour quiet reading at the end of the day. So that's about 7 hours altogether, excluding outdoor stuff or vaguely educational activities. Middle-primary age.

Neeks888 Mon 18-May-20 10:30:26

With no online lessons and working from home full time ours is considerably less... maybe 1 full hoot in the morning and 30 mins reading at bedtime

Taytotots Mon 18-May-20 10:34:36

The study had a weird way of reporting time 'Importantly, we focus on the number of one-hour slots during which parents reported
that their child did at least some of each activity. Summing the number of slots may
overstate the amount of time that children spent on that activity (for example, a child who
read for half an hour at 10am and at 3pm would record doing reading in two of the one-
hour slots). '. Learning was ' Learning at home: This includes activities such as studying, attending virtual lessons or
doing home learning assignments. For children in primary school, it also includes
reading.'.

PeppaisaBitch Mon 18-May-20 10:37:02

I would say that my 4year old does more. For example, We've already done making own breakfast, playing a board game with two dice so she could add and move the pieces, reading stories together and making little stick puppets to retell the story. That's 2hrs. Snack time now. Then we are going out and plant some veg. But I wouldn't class these as learning activities for a 13year old. My 13 Year old sister probably does less because her learning activities are much more structured proper school type stuff. Guess it depends what learning activities are.

BernadetteRostankowskiWolowitz Mon 18-May-20 10:38:48

Depends what they mean.

Dd and I spent an hour the other evening doing Sudokos. I taught her how to do them, then she spent time working through them.

To me, that was just us chilling in the evening, but the more wankier parent may class that as "learning time"

inwood Mon 18-May-20 10:40:09

About as reliable as the Zoe app.

unchienandalusia Mon 18-May-20 10:40:44

My two DCs y3 and y5 are doing full online school timetable. 8.30 to 4pm with an hour for lunch. Private prep. Plus some homework occasionally and online piano and ballet.

There's no way the private schools could justify the 80% fees if they didn't do this.

I would also send them back once schools open for their years.

HeadSpin5 Mon 18-May-20 10:54:07

@Randomnessembraced I saw that too. Interesting as that pretty much exactly reflects the split around here/in my child’s class as to who wants schools open now and who doesn’t.

RHTawneyonabus Mon 18-May-20 10:59:41

Interesting Taytotots

so we do PE with Joe. They usually manage 10 min instrument practice between 10-11. 11-1230 is set aside for literacy and after lunch we do a bit of maths. Occasionally we do craft in the afternoon but mostly they entertain themselves.

Adding up actual learning time it’s 3 hours 10 minutes. But as measured by the study it would count as 5

OP’s posts: |
BlackeyedSusan Mon 18-May-20 10:59:47

One of mine is doing 6 hours a day, the other is lucky to get 6 minutes... However, we are learning stuff, last weeks lesson was if you swear at your mum you get a computer ban... (autism...) There is not much learning going on if there is a full on meltdown..

HeadSpin5 Mon 18-May-20 11:01:32

My child’s school send out the daily timetables at the beginning of each week, 9-3:30 with breaks covering various activities . Every day has PE, guided reading, English and maths(with daily video from teacher explaining/demonstrating the concepts) with the other slots varying From music to art to RE etc. Also includes times for online maths (eg TT Rockstars) and story time, where the teachers have videod themselves reading aloud. This is a state primary, Year 3. We get daily feedback from the work submitted (just photo it and email to teacher). Mine is getting through it as although we are both wfh FT, I only have one to cope with (though it’s still damn hard and relentless). I know other parents with multiples have submitted less and are not pressured by the school. I’m very relieved at the approach ours is taking when I read on here about some doing next to nothing.

Hippofrog Mon 18-May-20 11:02:14

Does Minecraft class as educational? If so DS is doing loads

HeadSpin5 Mon 18-May-20 11:04:10

Forgot relevant but! Adding the time it’s about 4.5-5 hours ‘scheduled learning’

RedskyAtnight Mon 18-May-20 11:06:09

That study includes secondary schools as well as primary schools where it's much easier to gauge work done.

My DD's school is setting regular work that is not dissimilar to what she would have at school. So that's 5.5 hours a day. The work doesn't always take the time for a whole school lesson, but sometimes it takes more so it evens out. She's also learning skills such as cooking and gardening. 6 hours sound about right for her.

SimonJT Mon 18-May-20 11:16:47

It depends what they mean by learning.

We do Joe Wicks every week day, bit of reading, bit of maths, bit of writing, cooking, piano. It hugely varies. I’m working now (but I can essentially work whenever as long as my hours average out).

Spidey66 Mon 18-May-20 11:17:31

Lots of things could be deemed learning activities.

Food shopping....maths, nutrition, money management, economics
Cooking/baking.....more maths and nutrition plus a bit of science (e.g. heat rising in the oven, what makes bread or cakes rise)
Going to the park....science and nature (identifying trees, flowers, insects etc), PE by walking or cycling there or kicking a ball/throwing a frisbee
Bathing/showering/hand hygiene-biology, PSHE, current affairs (by linking it to covid19)

I'm sure there will be loads of parents who are classing this kind of everyday activity as a "learning activity" while others just we it as an "everyday activity."

Camomila Mon 18-May-20 11:26:34

I think its probably quite easy to get 6h of learning activities with a preschooler (helping make food, role play, exercise, bedtime story) or a self-motivated teenager (including stuff like playing a musical instrument, doing art, or writing stories for hours)

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