Investing in your child’s education doesn’t always mean starting a college tuition fund or opening a CD in the name of your 10- year-old in hopes it will multiply before they get their college acceptance letter. There are ways other than financial help that may be more beneficial for your child’s education and they will not break your bank account. The following five suggestions may very well give a higher return on your child’s educational investment, especially if they are established early in his education career:First: Homework. There are varying opinions among teachers regarding how much and what type of homework to provide. However, most teachers do agree that when a parent is involved in some way in the completion of a student’s homework, that student has a greater chance of success. Whether or not a child has someone help with their homework each night is a huge indication of whether they will understand the material. The fact is simple: even the best teachers must teach an entire group of students at a time while a parent can work one-on-one with the child. This is a very important factor. Teachers will jump through hoops just to arrange a few minutes a day to teach a smaller group of students. Student learning increases dramatically when teachers have a smaller number of students, therefore, the more one on one time that you have with your child at home, the more your child will learn. Every minute you can take to read or practice or review with them one-on-one will do wonders for their education.Second: Respecting and Supporting your child’s teacher.. When I was growing up parents and teachers were on the same page. Somehow this has changed where the student and the parents are often opposing the teacher. This has horrible repercussions for the child’s ability to learn. Working together always works better than working individually. If a parent slips a word of disrespect or disapproval at the dinner table the night before, a student is far more likely to discredit much of what the teacher says the following day. By openly showing that you don’t support the teacher’s decisions you are teaching your child that it is fine for them to do the same thing in the classroom. If a student does not respect his or her teacher learning becomes far more difficult.Third: Use technology wisely. Technology plays an increasingly important role in education today. However, it can also be a huge distraction. Set priorities and rules for technology in your home. This may seem like common sense but common sense is not always so commonly realized, and technology is having a negative effect on the education of many students. For example, spending hours and hours on a gaming system before starting homework late at night makes homework much less effective. Children are less engaged in homework and the completion of it becomes a battle with parents as opposed to a learning routine that is established early in the evening. On the positive side, teach your child how to use technology to enrich and improve their learning by using online resources and materials.Fourth: Get involved in the classroom. This tip is mostly directed towards parents of elementary-aged children. Many teachers appreciate parent volunteers. Time spent in your child’s classroom is invaluable! It will help you better understand events and situations that occur in your child’s classroom and life. It will help you understand different procedures and systems in the environment where they spend most of their day so that you can better help them with any problems that arise socially or academically. It also helps show your child that you value their learning and take time when you can to support them and their teacher.Fifth: Communicate with the teacher. This is an under-utilized tool in education. Parents and teachers are both working for the same goal to help the same child learn. Communication is essential! Teachers could use your advice about how to help your child when they are struggling with something going on at home. Similarly, parents could use a teachers help when students are struggling academically. When parents and teachers work as a team the child can feel the network of support around him or her and both adults’ workloads are lightened. When you communicate a teacher knows you are involved and appreciate and respect the work they do for your child. They will include you on more information when they know you are interested. Communication is essential for parents and teachers to work as a team to help the child succeed.If you can establish these five basic principles in your child’s experience early, then their chances of a higher education will increase significantly before they even start thinking of college. No matter how large a child’s college fund may be, if they do not have a foundation of respect and value for education, it will be much harder for them to succeed.
Steps to take when you are concerned about your child’s academic progressChildren attend school in order to learn fundamental skills in order to eventually become productive, contributing members to society. When you send your child to school you expect the teachers to teach and your child to learn. However, not every student progresses academically at the same pace. If your child doesn’t seem to be keeping up with what is being taught, struggles with reading, math, or writing, doesn’t seem to retain new information presented in school, is struggling with homework, or seems to dislike school then you may want to take the following steps to express your concerns about his or her academic progress.1. Document your concernsThe first step to take is to document your concerns. Getting a notebook to write down specific examples of when your child experiences difficulties and with what subjects will be helpful in later steps when you articulate your concerns to the school. Keeping work samples, progress notes, report cards, standardized testing results, and teacher feedback helps you to see whether or not these struggles and concerns are consistently present.2. Make contact with your child’s teacherMake a phone call or send in a note to your child’s teacher. Letting the teacher know that you have concerns about your child’s academic progress is a good idea because it lets them know that you are invested and following through at home. Teachers will usually have additional information about your child’s academic progress, and they will typically offer suggestions for extra practice as well as keep a closer eye on your child’s progress in the classroom.3. Ask for a conference with your child’s teacherA conference with your child’s teacher, or team of teachers, is a more formal meeting where you can discuss specific concerns and strategies that have been attempted. A conference is sometimes helpful because there are usually additional teachers involved who can help brainstorm strategies for interventions. In addition, you can develop an action plan with the teacher and/or team in order to monitor your child’s progress which can be followed up on at a specific time.4. Make contact with the principalYour child’s principal may have additional suggestions or know of additional resources to help you with your concerns. She may suggest pre-referral interventions or response to intervention (RTI). These types of interventions may already have been implemented, however, if they haven’t, then they will be useful in order to determine your child’s response to specific and targeted interventions. The idea behind these approaches is to intervene before your child fails.5. Discuss your concerns with your pediatricianAt any point in time you can discuss your concerns about your child’s academic progress with his/her pediatrician. Your pediatrician is an expert on child development and behavior. They are often able to give suggestions and guidance in how to ask for help from the school. They can also help determine if there is any health or physiological condition that is interfering with your child’s academic progress.6. Refer your child for a special education evaluationIf you feel that your child is not making academic progress or that they have a learning disability then you can make a referral to the school for a special education evaluation. You can ask for this type of evaluation at any point in time. You don’t have to wait until after RTI or pre-referral interventions have been implemented. This evaluation is will be provided to you at no charge by the public school, and it will help you and the school team better understand your child’s learning strengths and weaknesses.As a parent you are your child’s first teacher. You can tell when your child is having a difficult time making academic progress. You are also your child’s best advocate. As his/her advocate you can use some of these steps to help your child get the services s/he needs in order to succeed academically. It is important to know and understand your rights under educational law so that your child receives a free and appropriate public education. If you have concerns or need assistance then it can be helpful to consult with a professional advocate.
It is the dream of every parent to be able to raise a smart kid. Smart kids are the pride of parents. Do you know that as a parent, you can help your child become the achiever that you want him to be?Science has taught us that genetically children get their characteristics from their parents. Those characteristics include not only a child’s physical outlook but his inner attributes as well, such as intelligence, mannerisms, and other aspects which constitute the overall personality of the child. If those attributes are genetically passed from person to person, then how could a child born from parents with average intelligence become an achiever? Does this mean that only those children who have genius parents are the only ones who can become achievers?The answer is a definite NO. Although children may get the genetic characteristics of their parents, they may or may not possess the same level of intelligence their parents have. Some children may even surpass the intelligence level of their parents or any one in their genetic line.Parents play a great role in their child’s development. At 0 year onwards, it is imperative that parents actively participate in facilitating their child’s progress. One way to help accelerate your child’s progress is to give him educational toys. Indeed, there are many toys that you could give your child but it is always best if you could give him toys which would help develop his mental ability and enhance not only his motor skills but his conceptual and language skills as well.In our modern society, we could choose from a variety of educational toys. Thus, as parents, we have the liberty to choose any toy which we believe is right for our child. However, we must be aware of the right educational toys for our precious little baby.At the onset of science and technology and the influx of modern gadgets, toy manufacturers have devised new toy models to fit the needs of society. Parents can now choose from different models of educational toys which are imitations of real gadgets and hi-tech equipments.The following are toys which are highly recommended for children 1 to 5 years of age.1. Toy PC. This toy helps develop your child’s cognitive skills. Toy PCs include exercises on alphabets, sound recognition, color recognition, numbers, musical notes, and other games which are designed to help children develop their cognizance and mental ability.2. Toy cellular phones. These toys help in the social and language development of a child.3. Story books with vibrant colors and pop-up images. These toys help enhance a child’s creativity and imagination. Read to your child and point out and name the pictures they see on the book. Likewise, encourage your child to make up his own story based on the colors and pictures he sees on the book.4. Snap-together construction sets or building blocks. These will help enhance your child’s imagination and construction skills.5. Non-toxic clay. Letting your child play with non-toxic clay can help develop his creativity and imagination and his ability to form things.Educational toys are indeed a great way to help accelerate your child’s progress. However, parents must not rely on toys alone. More than anything else, it is the parents’ love, support, and encouragement which children need the most, not to mention giving him proper nutrition.