A child’s educational journey is not a lone journey. For a child to thrive in academics, a parent’s involvement is essential.
But there are things that parents rarely link to academic performance that, in reality, can make or break your child’s academic success.
Here are a few of those things to consider:
Create The Right Environment
If you want kids who are successful in all walks of life (or at least most of them) you can bet that success starts at home.
Creating a balanced and peaceful home life isn’t always easy, but the truth is kids need a stable and supportive home life in order to prosper in any part of life.
What does that mean exactly?
It means limiting and mitigating the types of stress from your home that could cause your kids to worry more about what’s happening at home than anything else.
But also and more importantly, it means that you have to have a loving and open relationship with them. Kids who feel loved will become adults who are kinder, more energetic, happier and mentally well.
In fact, studies show that well-loved kids are even physically healthier.
“When a flower doesn’t bloom, you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower”-Alexander Den Heijer
Practice Effective Communication
Communication should be more than asking how your kid’s day was and it certainly goes beyond knowing the highlights of each other’s lives.
Communication is important for you to be able to know, understand and help your child in areas where they struggle.
It could be as simple as solving a misunderstanding between friends that is seriously hindering her concentration at school.
Simple, but not always easy.
The good news is that it’s never too late to start developing this skill as a person and as a family regardless of the struggles that coincide with the absence of it.
Good communication is important for everyone, but promoting and fostering this skill from as early as possible could help your child:
- Build an incredible self-esteem
- Promote self-awareness.
- Have strong relationships.
- Promote leadership skills.
- Increase intelligence and curiosity.
- Have a broader understanding of his/ her world.
It’s important to note that communication is never one-sided; it’s just as important to listen to your children as it is to talk to them.
“Communication works for those who work at it.” John Powell
Be Involved and Proactive About It
It’s no longer news that it’s important to be supportive of your child and his/ her activities.
However, the difference between support and involvement is that you can be supportive by being at your child’s spelling B or you can be involved by being there and knowing exactly which words he/she will struggle with as they come up.
Involvement goes deeper.
For example, if your child struggles with reading get him/her some of their favorite movies in the form of a book and read it aloud with them every night.
Do you have a math hater on your hands? Try some fun activities at home.
Do your kids love summer more than school? (Who’s doesn’t?) Sign them up for an exciting summer program that will get them so hyped up for school that they cannot wait for it to start.
Keeping your kids’ minds stimulated at home is just as important as it being stimulated at school. It promotes the love of learning and gives them a renewed sense of adventure for all things academics-related.
“At the end of the day, the most overwhelming key to a child’s success is the positive involvement of parents.” Jane D. Hull
Teach Them Responsibility.
You don’t want your child to do well in school because you push him to. You want your child to do well in school because he wants to; because he realizes that his success is his responsibility.
This kind of self-realization can only come from a sense of responsibility that a child’s parent teaches to them.
Besides, if you have to push your kids in academics, you’ll always have to do it and they’ll never have the drive to accomplish that without you.
Easier said than done, but here are a few simple tips that you can implement in your daily life to help:
- Let them do things for themselves (Not dangerous things, obviously.) There’s nothing wrong with letting your 3-year-old attempt to peel a banana on his/her own. Or your 10-year-old to pack his/her own lunch.
- Stop doing their thinking for them, or they’ll never learn to do it on their own. For example, if your child wants to bake a cake, ask them to read the recipe and take out all the ingredients and equipment you will need. When they need something, give them a clue but nothing more.
- Let them do chores! Yes, chores. Why? Because you’re not just raising children, you’re raising children into adults. Adults that need to be able to do things for themselves. Like cook and clean.
- Have a routine in place. Work with your child to set out specific times to do specific things like homework time, chore time, dinner time etc. A routine is a powerful way to create healthy habits for your child. They will start doing things without you asking because it’s their routine.
“The price of greatness is responsibility.” – Winston Churchill
Find Your Balance Together
Your child needs to find a healthy school-play balance, just like you need a work-life balance.
Being too focused on one thing (like results) can take away from more important things (like effort, adventure, and progress)
Help your child achieve a balance by having fun with them as a family or taking them on unexpected adventures.
Downtime is how they recharge and refocus their brains. This is good for productivity, creativity and well, life.
“Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony.” Thomas Merton