As we start the beginning of another school year, there is anticipation, excitement and anxieties surrounding the first walk into the classroom. And I am not just talking about how the teacher feels!
For many years I have had conversations with my own children about what they might be feeling and expecting. These conversations got me thinking! What can we do as parents to help empower our children to make that first day the beginning of the best days to come?
Recently I read a great blog on Edutopia, where teacher Nick Provenzano gives four simple tips to teachers that will help them build relationships with their new students.
It inspired me to share four tips parents can do to make this school year a success. This starts with a conversation.
#1: Talk It Out
Start the school year off with a bang by having conversations with your child about what their expectations and fears are for the year. Allow them the space to put words to these thoughts. This is a great opportunity to let your child know where you fit into the equation, and how you will be there to support them.
#2: Hold them Able
Once your child has verbalized their hopes for the year, hold them able to accomplish these goals. Support them by writing their goals and putting them up where they can see them daily. This will remind them of what they were hoping for when they started the school year. A great gift to your children is setting out blocked time each week to connect and see how they're progressing and what they’ve accomplished so far.
#3: Connect their Head and their Heart
Engaging with your child not just on an intellectual level but an emotional one helps cement positive behavior. Does your child struggle with a certain subject in school? Take this time early in the school year to have a conversation around setting aside steady one on one time to work with them on it. Knowing they have this time with you can create the emotional connection your child needs to keep his/her interest peaked.
#4: Don’t Shy Away From the Rough Stuff
Sometimes your kids tell you stuff that stops you dead in your tracks. Take this chance, with the beginning of a new year, to not deflect these tough conversations. Instead tackle the tough challenge and lean in! Get curious and interrogate their reality. Leveling with them ensures that as you build through out the new school year, your base is a solid foundation.