Families take unique approaches to distance learning

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SAN DIEGO — The way parents have chosen to navigate distance learning has shown itself in a variety of ways since the start of the pandemic. Some have made strong efforts to get students back in the classroom while others have made efforts to keep them away from it.

But while distance learning has taken on a significant role, many have found there isn’t always just one way to do that, either. We’ve found while kids can’t be on campus in most cases, some parents have taken this time to enable remote learning from even more remote locations, opening up opportunities for road trips and sightseeing as part of that experience. 

The Burks family packed up their stuff from Carlsbad and hit the road, deciding to homeschool their kids, be closer to family in Florida for the school year and learn by seeing the country they might never have seen otherwise.

“We may never get this time again,” father Drew Burks said.

And sightseeing doesn’t just have to happen in the traditional sense. With the advent of affordable virtual reality, children are able to explore places and history in a way like never before in 2020.  

Still, there is no one-size-fits-all plan. School psychologist Dr. Rebecca Branstetter says learning is not a place, it’s a relationship. And so the quality of a student’s experience is more important that the location where it happens.  

In a year unlike any other, it’s learning how to adapt that’s the one lesson that might be most the most universal of all.

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