Keep track of issues that arise during the week and schedule frequent meetings to resolve them as they arise. Yamalis Diaz, a child and adolescent psychologist at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York, suggested taking turns sitting down with your own family and everyone on the pod every other week: “Just like when you are part of a team at work. "
Set a clear agenda for these meetings to ensure that all participants have the time and are emotionally prepared to address issues. Write down the decisions you make and update your initial guidance document as needed so your pod can refer to them later. And be ready to compromise.
Look at other perspectives.
"Everyone is really prepared to be overwhelmed and fearful," said Stephanie Lee, senior director of the A.D.H.D. and Behavior Disorders Center at the Child Mind Institute in New York. And that stress can be made worse when you talk about the wellbeing of your children. Use empathy when raising issues with other members. present a possible solution and withhold judgment. "It is important to approach this with the idea that there is no ideal situation," said Dr. Lee. "If it were, we would all do it."
Taking into account the specific perspectives of the pod members is especially important if one of the children in the pod is disabled or if the families come from different ethnic, socio-economic or linguistic groups. "The first thing to look at is who spoke more and who was heard less," said Dr. Lewis-McCoy. “The only way these Pods can work towards justice is to find a place to share,” while listening to the specific needs of different families to ensure that each Pod member is supported.
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Consult teachers and experts for assistance.
Distance learning has put many parents into roles that are normally filled by teachers and school administrators. However, educators are trained and experienced in dealing with problems that parents may find insurmountable – especially when it comes to student behavior in the classroom that many parents are only seeing up close for the first time.
"Parents should be reminded not to have all the answers," said Dr. Diaz. She suggested getting academic and behavioral support from the private tutor of a pod or student's school, as well as psychological and emotional support from a counselor or therapist.
Don't forget about adult friendships.
In the midst of the stress of organizing logistics and managing personalities, it's easy to forget that pods are supposed to be a good thing. Dr. Diaz noted that while parents are constantly communicating through the pod, little time is likely spent on self-sufficiency and relationships with other pod parents. In addition to regular get-togethers, make time for adult-only happy hour or dinner, morning walks and other social activities that include children.