Did you know that the week of November 11 -17 is American Education Week? This week presents us with the opportunity to celebrate all of the amazing people that help make a difference in our kids’ lives. As always we at READS like to recognize not only your child’s classroom teachers but YOU, the family members that are actually the ultimate teachers.
Tuesday, November 13th is designated as Parents Day. Across our country schools will invite you to come and spend some time in your child’s classroom. If at all possible try to go. It will provide you with an interesting insight as to what really goes on in school and the team effort that is necessary to help our kids as they grow into adults.
My regular blog readers probably know that occasionally I like to share some experience about “things” that have occurred in my classroom. One of my favorite memories is when a parent approached me, with a snicker or her face, and told me how easy my job was and that she wished that she was also a teacher. I responded that I would love for her to come and spend the day and that I would be happy to help her if she decided to change careers. She accepted my offer and came to my classroom for a visit. After 45 minutes of watching silently she quietly rose from her chair and asked if she could speak to me privately. The moment the kids went out to recess she began apologizing. I can still hear her words as she told me she had no real idea of what went on in a classroom before.
As an educator I thank all of you wonderful parents for the job you do with your children. We are all members of the same team working towards the same goal.
Follow this link for suggestions on how to help ensure your child’s success in school. National Education Association
American Education Week presents all Americans with a wonderful opportunity to celebrate public education and honor individuals who are making a difference in ensuring that every child receives a quality education. The weeklong celebration features a special observance each day of the week. They include:
- Monday, November 12: Veterans Day
- Tuesday, November 13: Parents Day
- Wednesday, November 14: Education Support Professionals Day
- Thursday, November 15: Educator for a Day
- Friday, November 16: Substitute Educators Day
Many teachers have written to me over the years, frustrated with how unprepared their students are—and they don’t mean academically. Chris, a kindergarten teacher, wrote what many teachers have expressed, “I would love it if you could write a “10 tips for parents” to help us teachers do our increasingly demanding job. Many parents of children I teach have left the job of spiritual, character, and social/emotional education to me. I can’t do it all in addition to teaching academic skills. I’m getting burned out and pretty soon won’t have the energy left to nourish one child let alone 25.”
So, in response to Chris’ request, here goes—my 10 tips:
1. Create a smooth takeoff each day. Give your child a hug before she ventures out the door and you head to work. Look her in the eye, and tell her how proud you are of her. Your child’s self-confidence and security will help her do well both in school and in life.
2. Prepare for a happy landing at the end of the day when you reconvene. Create a predictable ritual such as 10–20 minutes listening to your child talk about his day—before you check phone messages, read the mail, or begin dinner. That way you are fully present to listen, and your child has a touchstone he can count on between school and home.
3. Fill your child’s lunchbox with healthy snacks and lunches. Have dinner at a reasonable hour and a healthy breakfast. A well-balanced diet maximizes your child’s learning potential.
4. Include calm, peaceful times in your children’s afternoons and evenings. Maintain a schedule that allows them to go to school rested, and if they are sick, have a system in place so they are able to stay home.
5. Remember it’s your children’s homework, not yours. Create a specific homework space that’s clutter-free and quiet. Encourage editing and double-checking work, but allow your kids to make mistakes, as it’s the only way teachers can gauge if they understand the material. It’s also how children learn responsibility for the quality of their work.
6. Fill your child’s life with a love for learning by showing him your own curiosity, respecting his questions, and encouraging his efforts.
7. Fill your home with books to read, books simply to look at, and books that provide answers to life’s many questions. The public or school library is an excellent resource.
8. Be a partner with your child’s teacher. When you need to speak to him or her in reference to a specific issue with your child, do it privately, not in front of your child. Make a point never to criticize your child’s teacher in front of your child.
9. Set up a system where routine items are easily located—such as backpacks, shoes, signed notices. Create a central calendar for upcoming events to avoid the unexpected.
10. Tuck a “love note” in your child’s lunch bag to let her know how special she is. Knowing they are loved makes it easier for children to be kind to others.