Last week, we took a look at some of the ways that you can help your child succeed in school. That blog discussed why going to parent-teacher conferences, visiting the school, supporting homework expectations, and sending your child off to school ready to learn are all so important to their success in their studies. Today, we’ll be concluding our two-part series with a few more ways you can help out. Giving your child opportunities to be physically active will help their brain function, so why not bring them to Rebounderz Trampoline Park here in Lansdale so they can have some fun while getting exercise?
-Teach Organizational Skills
While being organized can certainly come to some people easier than others, it is a skill that can be taught. By giving your child a solid foundation of staying organized, not only will they be able to be more successful in school, they will carry those skills onward into adulthood. Being organized will save your child time and stress, as they won’t have to search high and low for what they’re looking for, since they’ll already know where it is. That gives them the ability to stay focused and avoid the anxiety that comes with losing something important.
What should your organization expectations be at an elementary school level? You can make organization easy with an assignment book and a homework folder where they can store their homework and projects. This will help them keep track of where their assignments are and when they are due. It’s important that you provide a level of accountability for your child as they are developing these skills. Check their assignment book every school night to ensure you’re familiar with the assignments they’re working on so you know they aren’t falling behind. This will also give you a chance to check in with them in case they are struggling, so you can discuss ways to pull them out of a slump.
Kids often have assignments or papers that need a parent’s signature, so it’s a good idea to set up a box for these types of papers. Likewise, you can put together a box for completed and graded assignments, report cards, and other pieces you may want to hold onto. This will also give you a chance to toss out anything that isn’t important so your child’s backpack isn’t cluttered with unnecessary items. While you won’t necessarily be able to help your child keep their desk or locker clean and organized, do what you can to show them how helpful it is when things are in order so they will be compelled to keep them that way at school. It’s also a good idea to teach your child about making to-do lists and using a calendar or agenda to help them know what is a priority.
-Teach Them How to Study
Just like organizational skills, knowing how to study can have a great affect on your child’s success, even beyond school. Good studying skills translate to good learning habits as they get older, which they can then apply to their future careers. For elementary school, most classes have end-of-unit tests in math, spelling, science, and social studies that they will take every so often. This is why it is important to have a good schedule for school assignments and tests, as it will help you plan for what needs to be studied on a given night.
When a test is coming up, remind your child to bring home any necessary supplies, books, notes, and study guides that they might need for the test. Help them break down their studying into smaller, more manageable tasks that make the test less overwhelming. Depending on your child’s skill level, you can teach them handy memory tricks, such as mnemonic devices or acronyms, that will help them retain tricky information. It’s a good idea to keep these sessions to 45-minute chunks before taking a break. That break is important to help your child process and remember the information they’ve just learned.
-Familiarize Yourself With Disciplinary Policies
Typically found in student handbooks, schools will detail their student code of conduct to ensure everyone knows the behavior that is expected of them. This will also get into the consequences of not meeting those expectations as they pertain to behavior, dress codes, use of electronic devices, and acceptable language. These policies may also cover attendance, vandalism, cheating, fighting, weapons, and bullying. When you understand the policies and consequences contained in the code of conduct, you’ll be able to teach your child how to behave in school, as well as what to do when a classmate is not following those guidelines. When you make behavior expectations consistent between home and school, you show your child that both environments are safe and caring, which gives them the confidence to succeed.
-Volunteer in School Activities
Getting involved in events the school puts on is a great way to show your interest in your child’s education. Many elementary school kids love to see their parents at school or school events, but it is important that you gauge how much interaction your child is comfortable with. If they begin to feel uncomfortable with you being around at school, it’s a good opportunity to take a more behind-the-scenes approach with your volunteering. Let your child know that you’re not there to spy on them and their friends — you just want to do your part to support the school community. Some examples of ways that parents can get involved include:
- Volunteering as a classroom helper or homeroom parent
- Organizing or helping with fundraising activities, such as bake sales, car washes, and book fairs
- Chaperoning a field trip
- Planning a class party
- Participating in school board meetings
- Joining the school’s PTA (parent-teacher association)
- Assisting in the library
- Reading a story for the class
- Speaking at career day
- Attending school concerts, plays, or sporting events
Talk with your child’s teacher or another school staff member to discuss volunteer opportunities that you can fit into your schedule. All it takes is a few hours during the school year to make a huge impression on your child and show them how much you care about their success in school.
There are so many ways that you can give your child the tools to succeed in school, but we hope these help get the ball rolling for you. Being an active participant in your child’s learning has the power to make them more motivated to do well. Teach them how to be organized and study, understand the rules and expectations the school has of your little one, and volunteer to help out when you can to ensure they thrive in their education. A great way to reward a strong report card is to bring your child here to Rebounderz in Lansdale. We’re sure they’ll love jumping around in our super safe trampoline park. We hope to see you here soon!