Most parents understand the importance of their child’s education. However, trying to convince a child to share your wisdom can be both frustrating and distressing.
Children who are disengaged from school find it difficult to be successful. The challenge we as parents, teachers and guardians need to overcome is how to make a child interested in learning; in other words, how to get your child interested in school.
From my experience as a teacher, the best way to get a child interested in school work is to make learning fun and approach all subjects with a touch of creativity and humour.
Having a parent tell you their child enjoys coming to school always gives me goose bumps and a sense of pride. I wish I’d felt that way about my teachers as a child.
How to get your child interested in school
Tip 1: Speak positively about education
Consistently let your child know how important education is and celebrate their successes whether it be for academic achievement, behaviour or effort.
Children from negative households and with parents who are disinterested or who fail to see the importance of education are contributing to their child’s negative experience towards learning.
Tip 2: Show your child you are interested in their homework
Ask your child how their day was; what did they learn?
Have them show you or explain it to you. Get them talking to you.
All parents should know what their child has for homework and when it is due.
Timetables, spelling words and reading aloud each day are the fundamentals of success, and should not be ignored or taken for granted.
There are wonderful resources available that can make this process a fun learning experience the whole family can enjoy.
Tip 3: Speak to their teacher
Every parent should speak to their child’s teacher at least once a term. This is an excellent opportunity to discover your child’s strengths and weaknesses. Conversations with their teacher can help to determine if there are any issues causing your child to disconnect or disengage from the classroom.
Queensland Council of Parents and Citizens Association president, Margaret Black says, “There’s nothing more powerful than a three-way (parent/teacher/child) partnership,” and I agree.
Tip 4: Visit their classroom
It is your responsibility to visit your child’s classroom on a regular basis. Teachers are always looking for volunteers and this is an excellent opportunity to witness your child’s behaviour, social skills and academic interest. Your presence alone will reinforce the importance of education and encourage your child to show more interest in the classroom setting.
Personally, I could count the number of parents I’ve had in my classroom on one hand. I realise parents are busy – everyone is busy – but if a classroom visit throughout the semester is planned, it can be worked into your diary and is achievable (and worthwhile, as far as I’m concerned).
Tip 5: Open up the lines of communication
Talk to your child. Make sure your child knows they are in a supportive, loving home environment and you are interested and respect what they have to say.
It may take many conversations but it’s crucial you actively listen to understand your child’s social wellbeing.
Finally, it is also the role of the teacher to make each child feel that they are in a positive and supportive classroom environment where someone believes in them and encourages them to believe that anything is possible.
If both parents and teachers maintain a united front, then the child is placed in the best possible situation for success and contentedness.
“Kids don’t learn from people they don’t like” –Rita Pierson
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