“Mom, this is too hard. Can you help me?” It’s a phrase that rings familiar in every parent’s ear. We want our kids to be successful students – but how much help is too much?
Studies show that when parents are involved, students perform better in school. The difficulty moms and dads face is knowing where to draw the line between being supportive and actually doing their child’s work themselves. Lending a hand occasionally with projects and assignments is a great way to show kids that education is important; however, it’s equally important that they experience the highs and the lows of learning and discover that effort is required – without the assistance of parents.
School helps children become organized, independent thinkers, both responsible and capable of taking academic risks. Here are some great ways parents can help without getting too involved:
Communicate. Have a dialogue with your kids about school every day. Ask specific questions: “How was math class?” or “What did you learn today?” Know your kids’ schedules and teachers’ names, and stay abreast of upcoming projects and assignments.
Help in a limited way. When it comes to homework, it’s okay to help, but don’t do the work for them. Create a homework-friendly atmosphere so it’s easy for kids to work without getting stressed, or losing focus or motivation.
Get into a routine. Kids who demonstrate consistent organization skills at home typically transfer those skills to the classroom. Morning, after-school, and evening routines all require organization skills to run smoothly. Whether it’s emptying book bags right after school, picking out school clothes the night before, or enforcing bedtimes, an organized routine teaches kids consistency, which pays off in school.
Set goals together. Help kids learn to think about long-term outcomes by discussing personal and academic goals for the year. Be sure to keep goals realistic, achievable, and measurable. Use calendars, planners, and agendas to keep the big picture in mind.
Keep them motivated. It’s important for kids to have the tools they need for success and the confidence to be in charge of their own learning to stay engaged. Oxford Learning’s Beyond Tutoring® program gives elementary-school students the skills they need to develop their capacity for learning, absorb and retain new information, get organized, get homework done well and on time, study and prepare for tests, and more.
For students in high school, Oxford Learning’s Advantage High School SuccessTM program ensures teens will be successful in high school and get into their post-secondary program of choice. They learn to organize their time and materials, study and prepare for exams, get homework done on time, take notes, write great essays, and more.
Both programs also provide tutoring in math, literacy and other school subjects, and provide in-session homework help. Most of all, both programs help cultivate an interest and potential for learning so students can soar beyond academic standards.
Never Stop Learning! For more information on these programs and how Oxford Learning can maximize your child’s learning potential, visit oxfordlearning.com or contact an Oxford Learning Centre near you.