As a parent, you are your child’s first and most important teacher. When parents and other family members are involved in their children’s schools, the kids do better in school and have more fun. Several studies show that what the family does has a bigger effect on a child’s academic success than how much money the family makes or how much schooling the parents have. Parents can help their children at home and at school in many different ways. Here are some ideas to help you get going!
Make friends with the teachers and other staff at your child’s school.
- Talk to your child’s teacher. Try to meet with your child’s teacher as soon as the school year starts. Tell your child’s teacher that you want to help with his or her education. Make it clear to the teacher that you want to know if your child is having trouble.
Don’t give up if you find it hard to talk to people in English. What you are trying to say is more important than how you say it. Please ask the school for help finding a translator. You might be able to get help from a teacher or a parent liaison. You could also ask a friend or relative who speaks more than one language.
- Find out who the important people at your child’s school are. At your child’s school, there are many people who work to help them grow academically, develop socially and emotionally, and do well in school. Even though each school is different, this website will give you an idea of who works at the school where your child goes.
- Go to parent-teacher conferences and keep in touch with the teacher of your child. Every school year, there are one or two parent-teacher conferences. You can bring a friend with you to translate, or you can ask the school to send one. During the school year, you can meet with your child’s teacher at any time. If you need to talk to the teacher about something but can’t do so in person, you can send a quick email or call the teacher.
Help your child do well in school.
- Keep an eye on how your child is doing. Talk to the teacher about how your child is doing in class compared to the other kids. Find out what you or the school can do to help your child catch up, especially in reading, if he or she is falling behind. It’s important to act quickly so your child doesn’t fall further behind. When your child’s report card comes home, check it.
- Fill out a form for special services if you think your child needs them. If your child’s school thinks he or she might have a learning disability, suggest that he or she be tested in the language he or she knows best. Your child may be able to go to class if the teacher makes some changes. If your child’s school says he has a learning disability, he may be able to get extra help for free.
- Make sure your child does all of his or her homework. Make it clear to your child that you value education and that they need to do their homework every day. You can help your child with schoolwork by giving them a place to study, keeping them on a regular homework schedule, and getting rid of distractions like the TV and phone calls from friends.
If you don’t want to help your child with homework because you don’t think you understand the subject well enough or can’t speak or read English, you can still help by showing interest, helping your child stay organized, giving them the materials they need, asking them about their daily assignments, making sure the work is done, and praising all of their hard work. Remember that helping your child with his homework won’t help him in the long run.
- If your child needs help with homework, look for it. Find someone who can help your child with homework or other schoolwork if you can’t. Call your local school, tutoring service, after-school activities, churches, and libraries. Instead, get help from a student who is older than you, a close neighbor, or a friend.
- Help your child study for upcoming tests. Exam results are a big part of how a student’s grade is calculated. Also, your child may take one or more standardized tests during the school year, and their teacher may use class time to help them prepare. As a parent, you can help your child before and after she takes a standard test. There are lots of other things you can do to help her learn every day and get ready for the test.
Get involved with your child’s school.
- Find out what the school has to offer. Study the information the school gives you at home, and if you need to, ask for it to be sent to you in your own language. Talk to other parents about what the school has to offer. Your child might be interested in a music program, an activity after school, a sports team, or a program that helps kids learn. Keep careful records of everything that happens at school during the year.
Take part in volunteer projects at school or with groups of parents and teachers. Parents who help out at school are liked by teachers. You can get involved in many different ways. You can volunteer to help your child’s class or the school library. You could cook for an event at school. Even if you work during the day, you can still go to your child’s recital or “parents’ night.” At most schools, a group of parents gets together regularly to talk about the school. The PTA or PTO is another name for this group. At the meetings, you will be able to talk to other parents and work together to make the school better.
Find out more and fight for your child.
- Make inquiries. If you are worried about how your child is learning or acting, talk to the teacher or someone in charge. For example, what kind of reading problems does my kid have? What can I do to help my child figure out how to solve this problem? How can I keep the bully from bothering my son? How can I get my kid to do his or her homework? Where does my child fit in terms of reading?
- Know what your rights are in the law. It is important to know what your rights are as a parent when it comes to special services, learning English, immigration status, and other things.
- Tell the school what’s bothering you. Does your child do well at school? Is he or she having trouble in school, with their behavior, or with learning? Do you have a problem with a teacher, a member of the school staff, or another student?
You should help your child learn at home.
- Show your kids that you think education is important. How kids feel about school and learning, and how confident they become as learners, may be affected by what we do and say every day. To help our kids do well in school, we need to show them how much we value education and how we use it in our daily lives.
Also, when parents and families care about their children’s education, they can get them excited about learning and show them that studying can be fun and rewarding and that the work it takes is well worth it.
- Watch what your child does on TV, video games, and the Internet. Children in the United States spend a lot more time online, playing video games, and watching TV than they do doing homework or other schoolwork.
- Try to get your child to read. Reading is the single most important thing you can do to help your child do well in school and in life. You can’t say enough good things about reading. Reading helps kids in every subject they study. It also sets the stage for learning throughout one’s life.
Talk to your child about the number 17. The ability of children to talk and listen has a big effect on how well they do in school. Children learn the language skills they will need in the future by listening to and responding to their parents and other family members talk. Children who don’t hear much talking and aren’t encouraged to talk themselves, for example, often have trouble reading, which can lead to other problems in school. Also, kids who haven’t learned to listen carefully often have trouble in school and don’t do what they’re told. You should also let your child know that you care about what he has to say.
- Tell your children to go to the library. At libraries, everyone can learn and find out new things. If you teach your child about libraries, he will be better equipped to learn on his own. Don’t forget that libraries are often open late and can be a quiet place for kids to finish their homework.
- Teach your child to be independent and take responsibility for his or her work. To do well in school, you need to be able to work on your own and take responsibility. You can help your child develop these traits by setting up fair rules that you always follow, reminding your child that he is responsible for his actions at home and at school, showing your child how to break a task down into smaller steps, and keeping a close eye on what your child does after school, in the evenings, and on the weekends. If you won’t be home when she comes, tell your child to call you to let you know what she plans to do.
- Help people learn by doing. Reading and doing homework are both passive and active ways for kids to learn. Active learning includes things like asking and answering questions, dealing with problems, and following your own interests. Your child is actively learning when he or she plays sports, hangs out with friends, acts in a school play, plays an instrument, or goes to libraries and museums. Your child may learn more if you respond to and pay attention to what he or she has to say. Let him talk about what you’re reading and ask questions. If you encourage this kind of give-and-take at home, your child is more likely to go to school and be interested in it.
Parents are very important to their children’s success in school, and Colorn Colorado gives them 20 ideas to help. By following these tips, parents can create a good place for their kids to learn and help them do better in school. Also, when parents work with their kids to help them become well-rounded people, they should keep in mind that education includes many parts of life, such as manners. In line with this, Grant Harrold’s blog post on Slingo.com gives five rules of royal etiquette that can help children improve their social skills and overall character. This makes it a useful resource for parents who want to give their children a well-rounded education. To discover more, go visit Slingo.com.