How Parents Can Work with Kids to Improve Grades
Education Begins at
Many parents make the mistake of assuming the school
district is responsible for teaching their child. While it is partially true, moms and dads often forget that
education begins at home. So many children falls through the cracks of the
educational system, and 9 times out of 10 these kids are not getting the
support needed at home to succeed scholastically.
If parents do not take an active interest in children's
learning, the kids get the message at a very early age! When boys and girls are small, following in
the footsteps of a parent is so important. So what are we, as parents, teaching
Read to the Children
It is never too early to start reading to the children. Some
parents actually believe in reading to their babies before birth. While some believe this practice may be a
little extreme, personal experience and education statistics prove reading to
our babies, toddlers, and even school age children is vital.
Even infants can learn to love books. While getting some necessary cuddle time,
parents can read plastic coated books that are specifically meant for little
hands and mouths. As the babies get
older, progress to the books made with heavy-duty cardboard. Why?
Books and learning are meant to be loved. Allow a small child to use all of his/her senses to check out a
book. Teaching a child the love of
reading is the foundation of how parents can work with kids to improve grades
long before formal education ever starts.
Learning is a Natural
Part of every Day
Parents teach children so much, before their sons or
daughters ever darken the door of a school building. For example, Mom might be making a pie for dessert tonight. As she is cutting the pie, it is the perfect
time for a math lesson. If she divides the pie into six slices and there are
three people in the family, how many pieces do you get to eat, if we share
Many parents are amazed at how much a toddler can learn and
truly understand if learning is a natural part of ever day living. The child may simply think of it as getting
attention or having fun, but parents know it is building the foundation for a
Sadly, too many parents put their offspring on the bus in
the morning and pass the educational baton to the teachers. Wrong!!!
Stay involved! Work in
partnership with the teachers.
Participate as a parent. Know
what the children are studying. Show an
interest in what was learned today, and how the day went as a whole.
Do not wait until report cards come out, to monitor a
child's progress. Most schools now have
a computerized grading procedure. In
other words, parents can be given a password to access their children's grades
any time day or night. If the grades
are less than stellar, click on the grade to find out what assignments are
missing. Oftentimes, the teacher will
write a note explaining scores, if they have dropped unacceptably.
Parents keep track of how a child is doing in school and
follow up on the assignments or other issues associated with good grades. Find out what the homework is for the day,
and see that it is completed BEFORE the child is allowed to do any recreational
activities. Follow up!
Many parents may actually opt to sit with the children
during homework time, to ensure they stay on task and get the job done
correctly. Otherwise, check the work
after completion, making sure a child has not rushed to get done, in order to
go out and play, only to have failed to complete the assignment properly.
Many students have lousy grades simply because no one will
hold them accountable. Sure, the marks
will drop, but unless children are intrinsically motivated to succeed, they
will not care. Unfortunately,
youngsters cannot envision the big picture and potential consequences of a poor
education years from now.
So, it is up to parents to teach accountability at
home. When a child fails to reach
his/her potential, do not let it slide.
Let children know that getting a good education is their job, and an
investment in their future. Establish
consequences for failing to get adequate grades. Then, make sure to enforce them, if a child chooses to do poorly
However, this does not mean punishing a child for trying and
failing. For example, if a child has
difficulty in a subject, yet does his/her best, do not take away privileges if
the grade is less than an A. However,
if a child is simply goofing off, putting recreation before studies, or being
lazy, step in before a small problem turns into an educational disaster.
Show by Example
Finally, parents who want their children to grow up and
value a good education must lead by example. For instance, do not expect a
child to love reading if Mom and Dad never pick up a book. Do not expect a
child to eagerly anticipate college, if
the parents dropped out of school.
Remember, it is never too late to learn, and it should be a lifelong
process. Go back to school by taking a college class. Pursue an interest and make it a reality. Show by example that
getting good grades and getting the best education is so important.
Parents, you are the first line of defense against an
educationally apathetic society. If you
want your children to succeed, you must first lead by example. Help your child to grow up with a sense of
accountability. Take and active
interest in their achievements and stay involved. Remember, it is never too early to instill the love of learning
into the heart of a child, and learn how parents can work with kids to improve
As written by Ray Ritchey