How You Can Help Your Child Succeed at School

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Everyone wants their children to do well at school, although parents are the biggest teachers of all in a child’s early life. Then they start leaving you every day for their lessons, but you can still be a big influence on how they progress in school and in the rest of their lives.  There are many things you can do to help support your children through their school days. Not every child can be top of the class, but you do need to know that they have achieved the best they are capable of.

Make Friends With Their Teacher

As soon as a school year starts you should get to know the teacher.  Let them know that you are there to support your child and if there are any problems you want to be informed right away. They should also be aware that you like to reward good work with a ‘well-done’, so you want to know if they excel at something as well.

Make sure to attend all official parent-teacher meetings, but never be afraid to speak with them at other times too. You should also remember that the teacher is not the only person that can affect your child, as there are others that dictate the way the school is run, as well as administrators and lunchtime staff. The more of them that you know, even if it is just to say hi, the more you will understand how your child can do well in the school you have chosen for them.

You can also find that the school your child is in is underfunded and that could be a great concern for the teachers and those in charge. Teacher Funder has been set up to help tackle this problem as it allows parents, students, and businesses to make donations to the school.

Support Your Child

Ask your child’s teacher how they are doing compared to other students, and if they need extra help in a particular subject, either do it yourself or arrange for some extra lessons. If they are having trouble learning generally, it could be that they need a specialist teaching and you should ask for this.

You should let the school know about your concerns and perhaps arrange a meeting with the teacher and the principle. Your child has rights if they need a specialist help, and they will be able to give you the advice you need.

Let your children know how important homework is and make sure they do whatever they are given. Don’t be afraid to help them with it if the need arises, as they can get very stressed out if they do not understand something and the teacher is not there to help.

If you cannot help them in a particular subject, make sure they have the resources they need for answers. There are many of them online that are there to assist children of all ages.

When they know they have tests coming up, they can become worried about them and you can help by showing them how to prepare and overlook through their work with them to double check that they understand it. A worried child will not do so well in tests, as one that is confident that they know the subject. You can help them to gain that confidence.

 

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Be Involved With The School

Teachers appreciate help in the school, no matter what form it comes in. If you can spare just a few hours each week to volunteer, your children will see this as a positive move and will be proud that one of their parents is giving up some time to help at the school. It does not have to be anything academic as there is much more to running a school than teaching. Help could be needed preparing things for an art class, or at break time watching the children play to make sure no one gets hurt. There are all sorts of jobs that you could help with and this could free the teachers to concentrate on what they should be doing.

Encourage Learning At Home

Have a positive attitude toward learning at home, and the best way to do this is to show them that you are still learning too. Show them that you value education and use it as part of your daily lives to reinforce the principle.  Even some video games are educational and you should encourage them to play these as well as the normal ones that most children play. Learning through play, no matter what age they are is a good way for them to remember things. Playing cards, for instance, can help them with mental arithmetic and Scrabble or Hangman can assist them with spelling.

Reading, of course, is very important, but it does not have to be things they have no interest in. It is better to read a comic book than nothing at all, as they will still learn from them.

It is not only school subjects that you should encourage them with. A documentary on TV can be a great way for them to learn about something new, as long as it is fitting for their age.

Children respond well to active learning and it can also teach them to be independent and to learn things on their own.

Let Them Play

Although learning is crucial for your children, so is just being a child and having fun. You should let them play with their friends as then they are learning how to socialize and how to treat other people and that is an important part of them growing into well-rounded adults.

Don’t just tell them that manners matter; use them all the time yourself. They will learn more by example than any other way, especially when they are very young.

Teachers play a vital role in the education of your children, but so do you. Their attitude towards school work and school life often reflects the attitude at home and if you show them the importance of education, without putting them under too much pressure to do well, they will work to achieve the best they can and that is all you can ask of any child.

Taking Care of Ageing Parents

In time, we all face the role reversal that comes from being parented by our parents to having to care for our parents like a parent.  Indeed taking care of elderly parents can be hard work; as not only do you need to tend to their medical and physiological needs but also their social and emotional needs.  In reality, this can be a tiring uphill struggle, particularly when dealing with illnesses such as Alzheimer’s and dementia, so here are few tips that will help lighten the load and take some of the weight off your shoulders.

HIRE A CLEANER

Often, cleaning and undertaking daily or weekly chores can be a core component of the time you spend with your parents looking after their needs; which, whilst essential in many respects this time could be better invested in engaging and interacting with them on a social level.  If you can afford to outsource the cleaning to an external cleaner, this will free up your time to connect and engage.  One of the most common issues amongst old people is a lack of social engagement – so pass the torch (or in this case, the brush) to someone else to take care of the cleaning and you start caring for the emotional state of the person you are working so hard to look after.

OUTSOURCE THE CARE

It might not always feel like the nicest of options, but there is a time and a place for outsourcing some of your parent’s care.  The cost of this can be pretty expensive, and whilst you’re paying a premium price you’re not always getting the premium service one would expect.  In fact, carers are some of the lowest paid members of the health community which can lead to a particularly young workforce who are inexperienced to deal with the challenges clients face in a tactful and caring way.

However, there are a number of services such as Seniors for Seniors elder care services that provide more mature and experienced carers who work from a place of passion, care and consideration – most likely having experienced something themselves with their own parents, this level of empathy and tactful interaction with their clients is a highly valued  commodity you are unlikely to find with younger carers.

HIRE A GARDENER

In a similar vein to hiring a cleaner, hiring a gardener to maintain aspects such as keeping the lawn trimmed and tending to leaves in the driveway (particularly useful if your parent could be at risk of slipping and falling) – these are jobs that are tempting to take on yourself, but outsourcing these jobs to a gardener, or even a family member, such as a child – will free your time up to care for more pressing emotional needs.

The golden thread throughout these ideas is that of outsourcing aspects of practical care so that you can focus more on engaging with the emotional aspects of your parent; in reality, they would most likely appreciate a day out by the seaside or a companion to watch their favourite TV show than have you rattling around in the kitchen; checking up on them to see if they have taken their medication.  Therefore, try to outsource as much as you can and focus on being their trusted friend rather than their ‘home help’