نوع مقاله : مقاله پژوهشی
استادیار گروه علوم تربیتی دانشگاه فرهنگیان، تهران، ایران.
عنوان مقاله [English]
Understanding Primary School students' Mothers' Experiences of Home-schooling during the Covid-19 Pandemica
The Covid-19 pandemic is a threat to human health and and has fundamentally changed many human activities. Since November 2019, the world has been facing a crisis called Covid-19, which has created an emergency for different countries, especially for their education system. Covid-19 Pandemic has disrupted the education systems of most countries. Social distancing, the school closure or the reduction in the frequency of face-to-face teaching, and the expansion of online teaching are some of the effects of the Covid 19 pandemic. During the pandemic, most parents prevented their children from attending school because they feared they and their children would be infected with the Corona virus. In such a situation, home-based education was the most appropriate option to maintain the health of students on the one hand and the continuation of their education and learning on the other hand. Home-based education created a situation in which parents entered their children's education and learning cycle for a long time. This phenomenon created a new educational order in which students did not stop their education.
The aim of the present study was to investigate primary school students’ mothers' experiences of home-schooling during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The present qualitative study was carried out using a phenomenological strategy. The study population was all mothers of Zanjan students in primary schools. It should be noted that during the Covid 19 pandemic, especially in the elementary school, mothers were more involved in their children's teaching-learning process than fathers for a variety of reasons. Therefore, in the present study, participants were selected from among mothers. From this population, 15 individuals were selected as participants in the study using purposive sampling (chain sampling). Semi-structured (in-depth) interviews were used to collect data. The average interview time was about 90 minutes, and the interview process continued until reaching data saturation. The interviews were conducted on Google Meet after making the necessary arrangements and were recorded after obtaining interviewees’ permission. Data analysis was carried out using thematic analysis. To perform validity assessment, peer review and member checking methods were used. To perform the peer review method, contacts were made with some individuals with sufficient experience and expertise in qualitative research methods, and their opinions on research design, data collection, and analysis was obtained. Regarding the member checking method, the interview text was coded, and interview analysis results were provided to several of the interviewees to revise them and comment on them. Most of the interviewees expressed satisfaction with the research process. To evaluate the research reliability, the interview text was coded by three anonymous individuals. The result showed 85% agreement between the coders and the relative stability of the responses was confirmed.
The research findings identified nine organizing themes as follows: 1) mothers' mental and attitudinal preparations; 2 teaching and learning platforms; 3) technological literacy for mothers and students; 4) guiding children's learning assignments; 5) supporting teachers' teaching; 6) supporting teachers' evaluation; 7) psychological status of mothers and children; 8) time in virtual teaching and learning; and 9) mothers' relationship with school agents (teacher, principal, assistants and counselor).
The results showed that home-schooling is a complex and challenging phenomenon for mothers. After the widespread closure of schools, mothers found themselves in a challenging and unfamiliar situation due to a lack of preparation for home-schooling. Although mothers were initially forced to accept home-based education, they were concerned about the adverse effects of reducing their child's social interactions. Although mothers gradually improved their capacity for home-based education, they found face-to-face school education to be an irreplaceable element for elementary school students. At the beginning of the virtual teaching, due to the lack of a suitable platform, the teaching and learning process was followed on social networks such as WhatsApp. With the launch of the "SHAD" platform, the formality and order of the classrooms increased. This platform, due to its relatively diverse facilities, somewhat increased the quality of teaching and learning process. In addition to the above, the findings showed that mothers did not receive the necessary training on how to use the teaching platform. The findings also showed that mothers guided their children step by step in homework such as math.Some mothers showed impatience due to their children's lack of motivation to do their homework. Mothers were unfamiliar with teaching methods to their children at the beginning of home schooling. Gradually, through gaining experience, self-learning, and the use of digital learning resources, their skills in supporting and complementing teacher teaching increased. According to the findings, mothers were actively involved in evaluating their children's learning. Although mothers's anxiety and stress were greater than their children in the formative and final evaluations, they controlled themselves and tried to reduce their children's stress. Despite the various concerns of mothers during the Covid-19 pandemic, they tried to create a relatively good learning environment for their children at home. The results showed that during the Covid-19 pandemic, formal teaching time decreased but informal teaching time increased. This, in turn, created challenges in the mothers' life program. Finally, the findings showed that mothers have a better relationship with teachers in "home based education" than in "school based education". They frequently consulted with the teacher about their children's learning difficulties. Mothers' relationship with the school principal was purely administrative. The lack of a psychologist or counselor at school prevented some mothers from receiving specialized help in dealing with their children's mental disorders.
Despite all the shortcomings and limitations of the Covid-19 pandemic, it provided opportunities for parents to enter the learning cycle more seriously and experience a new form of interaction with their children and teachers. Home- based education requires parental preparation; Providing the necessary software and hardware facilities; Psychological support; providing a suitable cultural background and so on. If these requirements are met, then effective learning opportunities will be provided for students, especially in emergency and crisis situations.