Some parents choose ‘learning pods’ instead of going back to the classroom

Learning pods are an alternate way for students to have virtual learning, while still being able to socialize and get extra help.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — It’s a nation-wide movement that is now in central Arkansas.

It’s called a learning pod. It’s typically a group of 5-10 kids with similar learning needs that meet together regularly to do their schoolwork.

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Natalie Baber created Little Rock Learning Pods after she decided she wasn’t sending her kid back to in-class instruction.

Her child is still enrolled in school and will do virtual learning. Baber said this is just another way for them to socialize and get extra help.

“I know our school has been really supportive of this and we are just having to come together,” said Baber. 

A learning pod isn’t meant to replace school, and can be done on a daily or weekly basis. Some parents may hire a tutor for their children’s pod or they may supervise it themselves.

“All of us, moms, community members, teachers, and principals are trying to figure out how to make this work. There’s no blueprint for this,” said Baber.

Chelsea Hudspeth is currently looking for a pod for her kids.

“I have kind of a plan for my three daughters, and I’m open to inviting a few other kids to come to my home if they are willing to create a pod,” said Hudspeth.

Hudspeth created another group, Southwest Little Rock Learning Pods, hoping to find parents who might need extra help.

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“We can support them with getting a device or getting a hotspot,” said Hudspeth. “All those collaborative efforts is what I really want to see, so we can all be successful.”