What are the best ways to help children do well in school? A big key is to be involved. We should not need to spend a great deal of money. But we may have to spend lots of time. For some, money is more plentiful than time so tutors or expensive programs may seem necessary. Let’s explore some ways to help with school that take more time than money.
Know the School and Teachers
Take time to get to know the school and teacher through visits, parent portals, and communication. Learn expectations and tell of concerns or problems at home. Be aware of how much homework there is and what reading your child should be doing. Be sure to go to parent-teacher conferences but don’t wait if there are doubts as it may be too late to repair somethings. If possible, visit regularly as a volunteer. Teachers do appreciate the help and it pays off in terms of attention your child receives.
Homework can be fun if your child understands the material and there is time. Do not put so many activities in your child’s life that he/she doesn’t have time to do homework. Make a place where a child can quietly work on homework. Have supplies handy and shut or the TV and phone. The rule on the amount of homework a child may have daily is 20 minutes per year. If it is getting to be too much, check with the teacher. The child may be procrastinating or maybe he/she doesn’t understand what to do.
Get involved unless he/she desires to work independently. Do not do the homework for your child as you are cheating him/her out of the learning experience. Never the less, you can learn with your child. Home work can become more enjoyable as a parent interaction period. Do not talk down the teacher or subject because that will put a stumbling block in the way of your child’s success.
Good Reading Helps all Subjects
If a child can become a good reader, he/she can get a jump on any subject. He or she will just comprehend better. How and when do you read?
- Read to your child when she/he is younger and chapter books when he/she gets older. Help them practice with beginner readers.
- Encourage summer reading and time to read regularly, maybe 20 minutes before she/he sleeps.
- Read yourself. Set a good example that reading is enjoyable. If you are concerned about what your child is reading, read it to check it out
Preschool helps a child get a head start and that certainly helps his or her self esteem. It also helps with socialization and speech. Despite lack of preschool academics, most children will reach there own stride by third grade. However, reading proficiency is a must by the end of third grade because then ” children are no longer learning to read but must read to learn.” Reading and study time must continue.
If There is Still Trouble
If you have done all these advised things to help your child and he/she is still falling behind, what should you do? First, meet with the teacher and find out what he/she thinks could be wrong. Your child is spending more time learning with his/her teacher than with you. Maybe your expectations are too high. Possibly the teacher has some study tips that might help. There could be before or after school tutoring program that could address this subject.
Have your child tested. He or she may need glasses. Maybe he or she has trouble hearing directions. There should be a child psychologist associated with your child’s school so make an appointment. Your child may have a learning disability. It could be your child has dyslexia, depression, or ADLH or some form of it.
One of my children was very bright but had trouble paying attention. The teacher along with a doctor recommended Adderal (a long term release form of Ritalin). This worked well for several years but he learned to cope and do well without it in high school. There were side effects he didn’t like. I know there is a lot of controversy over Ritalin but you can try it. Each child has different challenges and each will react differently with medication so if it doesn’t work well for your child, change it. I have seen children turn from being unteachable to good students with the help of Adderal.
I hope these tips help. Try them before you spend extra money on tutoring or classes. Then if you have more money than time and you can find someone you can trust to help, cautiously go for it.