Traits of A+ Parents
do successful parents do to help their children in school?
much education as possible, and have substantial savings, BEFORE you start your
family. The No. 1 correlate of school success is well-educated, stable parents.
married when you have the child, and stay married. Statistics show that coming
from a stable home with a mom and a dad in place is the strongest background
for good schooling.
move, except for career or academic reasons: it's usually a setback
academically for a child.
schooling and homeschooling are statistically better than public schooling, but
count the costs. "Afterschooling" your child with learning activities you do
with him or her, or paying for tutoring and special learning experiences, may
be better for your family and more affordable.
demographics and language skills of your child's classmates are key. Think
about how much time your child spends in the company of classmates; a lot of
the behavior modeling, language modeling and idea formation will stem from
peers. Some parents may decide that having model classmates is more important
than having a model teacher. If the kids your child is going to school with
aren't great, strongly consider moving to a different public school, undertaking
the expense of private school, or homeschooling.
high expectations for both learning and behavior with your child, but strike a
balance between pressure and passivity, or perfectionism and neglect. Keep the
tone light and loving in your home.
your child to the library once a week; make it a "must."
to your child nightly through Grade 6; 20 to 30 minutes is great.
well-balanced, homemade meals. Breakfast is key. Minimize sugars, salts and
pop. Offer healthy snacks like fresh fruits and sliced vegetables.
wake-up times, mealtimes, homework hours, perhaps a phone hour and a TV hour,
and a regular bedtime. The best students get eight hours of sleep or more.
a quiet place for homework. No multi-tasking with music, TV or Instant
Messaging. Your child needs to concentrate to be able to study, learn, remember
and think deeply. Point out how much more quickly the homework gets done when
it's the main focus, and then there'll be time for socializing and amusements
are crucial. Start young. By high school, your child should be doing a couple
of hours of housework or yardwork each week.
jobs can be wonderful, but make sure school comes first.
after-school activities to two or three at a time. These can shift around
during the school year. But don't overload your child or put too much pressure
on him or her. Think exercise, character and the arts. Examples: soccer team
and piano lessons, or dance class and Scouts. Spiritual activities on the
weekends and Wednesday nights are important, too.
curfews and consequences for missing them.
your child less selfish, and more tolerant, by directly involving him or her in
volunteer activities that you do as a family for the less fortunate, the sick,
the elderly and others who are disadvantaged in some way. Teach your child to
be giving and generous by regularly making everyone in the family cull through
their possessions and giving away what you don't need.
education is important. Remember, your child will get zip in public school.
Make spiritual formation a "must" in your child's weekly schedule, for lifelong
and, some would say, eternal rewards.
your child about sex and other "hot potatoes." Don't leave the key
tasks of parenting up to strangers at school.
your child each time you part: "I love you!"
Homework: For more ideas, see www.TheParentReport.com