Now that school is underway, it’s time to turn our attention to how we can support those important people who support our kids daily! Supporting our teachers is more important than ever, and school support help is crucial. Here’s what you can do, no matter what age child you have, or what type of school or classroom he or she is learning within.
Prepare your child to learn.
This can look different for different families and kids, but essentially, this means sending your child to school each day at her best. Prepare your child for back-to-school ahead of time, create and stick to a solid school day routine, ensure he gets enough sleep the night before, and provide good nutrition. Teachers can’t tell you how often they see sleep-deprived kids, and how often school day snacks basically comprise of candy. Set your kid up for success, and you’ll be setting his teacher up for success, too!
Dedicate a homework hour (or two, depending on age).
Support your child’s teacher by following through on homework support. Make homework time a prioritized part of your evening or afternoon, and be on-hand (or ensure another caregiver is on-hand) to help as needed.
Communicate, communicate, communicate!
It is too much homework? Did you son have a bad night or a rocky morning? Is something going on at home that may impact her day? Was there a medication change or a new diagnosis? Teachers want to know! Don’t leave them in the dark. A quick email or note will sometimes suffice for small issues that may arise, or you may wish to ask for a conference or meeting for the bigger stuff. The more communication happens, the better.
Volunteer if you can.
It is incredibly valuable to be in the classroom on a regular basis, because then you can see how the daily routine works, get a feel for the general dynamic, and see for yourself how your child interacts with his peers and teachers. And of course, it helps support your kid’s teacher, too! We understand that not everyone can volunteer during the school day, so if you cannot, get involved by joining a field trip as a chaperone or offering to donate materials or supplies. The more teachers see you involved, the more they feel supported.
Help your kids learn to be self-sufficient.
The more your kid can do for himself, the easier it is for his teacher, who probably has 20 other kids to help. Self-sufficiency comes in many forms, and parents can instill this in kids by encouraging a ‘you can do it’ attitude at home. Don’t jump in and ‘fix’ problems for your kids instantly; instead, talk through solutions and navigate it together. Don’t do everything for older kids in the mornings, like pack their backpacks and ensure their homework is ready; school-aged kids can be expected to do this themselves, with supervision.