The start of each new year marks a milestone for every primary school student as they transit from one Level to another. A child’s success in school – academic or non-academic – begins at home. As your child’s first teacher, your support is especially important to his or her performance. Here are some of the best tips to help your child.
Discoveries that may seem completely novel and exciting for your child may appear to us as ordinary or mundane. Nonetheless, take the time to know about what your child has learnt in school, or what happened today. It’s easy to dismiss their excitement, or their exhibition of signs of distress, which may lead to undesirable consequences. Listen, get involved and ask questions – that’s how you learn more about them, build trust and strong relationships. Remember, listen first before you start reacting.
Research has shown that encouragement is more effective in instilling good behavior in children as compared to punishment. Words of affirmation and appropriate praises play a significant role in boosting your child’s self-esteem and confidence, motivating them to become or do better. You can even do it in fun ways, such as slipping a note of encouragement into their snack box. Such notes will not just bring a smile to your child’s face, but also remind them of how much he or she is loved by you.
Set practical and achievable goals with your child at the beginning of each school term. By helping them visualise what they want to achieve by the end of the term, it helps them to be more focused and gives them a sense of purpose. Motivation also comes from experiencing that sense of accomplishment upon completion – knowing that if he can do it once, he can do it again! Goals can range anywhere from passing an English test to folding his own laundry. A little tip: Rewards work well with children! Not only do they make the process more enjoyable, it also gives them more motivation.
Contrary to popular thinking, luxurious gifts and lavish meals with your child are not as important as you spending time with him. Setting goals, giving encouragement and staying interested in your child’s life requires your commitment and time. With changes and new experiences that he encounters everyday, your support and guidance is more important than the most positive words told to him by his teachers and peers. No matter how busy your schedule, relook at your priorities if you need to, and let your child know that you will always be there for him.
Parents, YOU are important. Only you can guide your child in becoming the BEST version of themselves.