How to make an At-Home workstation for kids this school year

Dr. Beau Pierce

If your children are attending school from home in a virtual learning program, this video will help you correctly set up their workstation.

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What's up everyone Dr. Beau here and if your kids are working from home at a computer, stay tuned
because this video is for you.

So before you lose your ever living mind, dealing with your kids at home, learning on a computer, zoom, on canvas, or on Google classroom. Trust me, I get it. I'm the same way. I've got two little kids myself today. I want to give you guys my best tips and insights about how you can create a healthy working virtual classroom for your kiddos.

This comes down to three things:

First, it comes down to their posture.

Second thing is their position.

And thirdly, what is their performance like while working at home?

Now, first off, I understand that most children are going to be working from some sort of desk environment for about four to six hours a day.  I don't know about you guys, but six hours a day on a zoom call, literally drives me insane. So, I want to give you guys a few tips on how to control the chaos.

First off, what should their position meaning their desk posture look like? The number one thing that we want to avoid is having them sitting there on their little computers all day long, being bored, flipping up side down, right? No. What we want to do is we want to try to give them the best posture possible.

That all starts with having a good supportive foundation and chair. Make sure that the chair is upright and provides adequate  lumbar support for your child.

Now, if you're using a dining room chair, simply take a small towel or a small pillow and place it behind their low back region. It forces them to sit more upright.

What we don't want is the child being hunched over all day. In addition to that, the next most important thing is what they are staring at, the computer a desk monitor or
some sort of Chromebook?

The general rule of thumb is wherever your student or yourself is sitting, and when you're looking at your monitor you want your eyes to be right in the middle of the screen or to the bottom one third of the screen. If your child is seated  like this and they're looking completely down, that is going to force them look up and down multiple times throughout the day. Your student will start to notice that they may start getting headaches originating at the back of the head and neck. The first thing to do is to raise the monitor height or to prop up their Chromebook using books or stacks of boxes or whatever you want. You want to make sure their eyes are level with the middle of the computer monitor, and they are reading the bottom third of the screen.

Lastly, having to do with posture, don't let them sit like this ( laying down) as they spend hours at at their desks. Secondly, it's really bad posture, and third it is no fun to be the student who falls asleep on a zoom call. Make sure that they're upright.

The second thing that I want to talk to you guys about is what I call position. What I mean about position is how long is your student is sitting in front of their monitor
throughout the day?

Like I said prior, most students are going to school virtually for four to six hours a day. I've spoken to lots of my teachers and administrators and the thing that I talked to them about is every 20 to 30 minutes, allow your students to stand up,  move around, stretch, pull their shoulder blades back to get there eyes to look further off of the screen.

When we sit in front of a computer or a Chromebook for hours on end, it actually (neurologically) shuts off portions of our brain. I tell my student to please try to get up and move around a minimum every 20 minutes.

Matter of fact, there's this rule that has to go with what we talk about with number three is performance. And that is this. If you want your brain, your child's brain to perform at the highest level, they need to be up and actively moving every 20 minutes.

So here's the rule: We call it the 20, 20, 20 rule

For every 20 minutes of sitting on a Chromebook working, they need to get up and fully move their body for 20 seconds. I'm talking, jumping jacks, burpees, pushups, whatever you want them to do that gets them out of the seated position for at least 20 seconds and takes their eyes at least 20 feet away from the screen.

Neurologically our brains start to shut off if we sit in front of a computer screen for long periods of time. However, when our eyes are being forced to look further away, it actually causes chemical changes in the brain.

So every 20 minutes, for a least 20 seconds looking a minimum of 20 feet away.

Lastly guys, here's what we know. We are living in some crazy, crazy times right now. Our children, unfortunately, are not being allowed to go back and learn in an in person environment. It's weird for them. It's weird for the teachers. It's weird for us as parents. Basically, it's weird for everyone and we're all trying to do our absolute best to help one another out.

I'm going to make the commitment to not yell and scream at my kids. Just like I'm sure everyone else is, but we're all trying to do our best. So guys, please remember this.

Allow your student to sit in a good posture, allow them to get up and to move their bodies at least every 20 minutes. Lastly, set them up at a workstation for success.

If you guys have any questions about this virtual learning environment, please let me know, ask below in the comments. We're here to help you.

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