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A Guide For Parents on Getting Involved in Kids’ Education


A father helping his children through their homework

Studies show that when parents are engaged in education their children perform better in school. All parents want their kids to be successful in school and sometimes that means rolling up your sleeves and lending a helping hand.

The ultimate aim of education is to have children who are organized, independent thinkers, both responsible and capable of taking academic risks. The majority of children need a little support from Mom and Dad to get to that point.  But how much help is too much?

Somewhere between seeing grades on the report card for the first time and scheduling weekly phone conversations with the teacher is the perfect amount of parental school involvement. Parents should be involved and aware of what is going on at school, but not actively completing work for their kids.

HERE ARE SOME IDEAS TO HELP PARENTS GET INVOLVED IN THEIR CHILD’S EDUCATION

Communicate. Talk to kids about school every day.  Ask specific questions about classes.  Rather than asking, “how was school?” ask, “how was math class?  What did you learn?” Parents should know their kids schedule and teachers’ names, and stay abreast of upcoming projects and assignments.

Don’t Wait for the Report Card. One of the biggest mistakes parents make is waiting too long to correct problems. Rather than waiting for the first report card or progress report to come home, parents should follow up with issues that come up when and if they come up. If there’s a quiz on Friday, ask how it went on Monday. If marks are not what they should be, arrange a talk with the teacher and make a plan. And don’t be afraid to simply call the teacher just to check in and make sure that everything is going smoothly.

Help with Homework. There are a lot of DOs and DON’Ts when it comes to homework help.  It boils down to two basic rules: Help, but don’t do the work for them. Parents should help create a homework-friendly atmosphere where children can focus and get the work done without getting stressed out or losing motivation.

Organization. Morning, after-school, and evening routines all require organization skills to run smoothly. Whether it’s emptying book bags right after school, picking out school clothes the night before, or enforcing bedtimes, an organized routine teaches kids consistency, which pays off in school.  If disorganization is a problem at home, it’s likely a problem at school.  Kids who demonstrate consistent organization skills at home transfer those skills with them to the classroom. Help kids get organized at home, and you’re helping them be organized in school.

Set Goals Together. Part of the communication process involves setting academic goals for the school year.  Help kids learn to think about long-term outcomes by discussing personal and academic ambitions, big or small.  Be sure to keep goals realistic, achievable, and measurable. Use calendars, planners, agendas, or use our Academic Action Plan to keep goals on-track.

 

Do you have great tips to share on how you get involved in your child’s education?  We’d love to hear them.  Leave us a comment…and don’t forget follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

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