Support for a child’s education is found within the family. Parents have the unique opportunity to promote and support their child’s development as well as be a strong advocate for their child’s needs in education. There are many ways parents can be involved in the 13+ years of their child’s school experience. Whether parents are physically present in the school or promoting and supporting from home, a parent’s involvement is a predictor for a child’s future success.
Parents are their child’s first teacher and teachers know this.
Parents promote their child’s growth and development.
- Read to your child.
- Provide routines at home.
- Talk to and listen to your child.
- Provide good “brain food” so your child is ready to learn.
- Limit media to allow time for more connection with family.
- Set the stage for “good sleep” and your child’s long-term memory retention.
- Provide limits and boundaries for respect. This will transfer to respecting other adults as well, such as teachers.
School is a partnership.
Approach your child’s teacher as a partner. It’s valuable for your child to have this all-encompassing circle of care, allowing parents to be important advocates for their child’s needs.
- Bring an attitude of common good of the child.
- Be open to exploring options for your child
- Appreciate the importance and influence of the teacher in the life of your child.
- Talk about the teacher and school in a positive way. Your child is always listening, even when it seems they aren’t. Your body and tone speak louder than your words.
- Even if your views are different, look for solutions and not blame.
- Even if you might have had a negative experience with school, avoid letting that limiting belief cloud your child’s positive experience.
Communication between home and school is important.
- Text or send a note to the teacher.
- Email, not just challenges, but also the joys your child has had.
- Access PowerSchool.
- Accesses your child’s records is easy.
- Come to an open house.
- Attend a parent advisory committee and/or volunteer at school. Find out what resources your child’s school needs and how you could help.
- Let the teacher know the best way to contact you.
- CAUTION: Find a balance to your involvement. Support but not overtake.
Teachers want to know about your child and family.
- Write the teacher a letter of introduction with a little bit about your child and family.
- Extend your child’s home family to their school family.
- Help the teacher establish a relationship with your child by getting to really know them.
- Share your family’s culture. We all look at the world through our own eyes. Provide the opportunity for a new look with new eyes.
- Let the teacher know about changes or challenges in your home that might be affecting the child’s attitude and ability to learn.
Choosing to be involved in a child’s education is choosing to invest in their future. There are many more ways to connect school and home.
Contact your local school, or West Dakota Parent & Family Resource Center for more information, 456-0007 or toll free-1-877-264-1142.