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Post Goals on the Fridge


Q. What kinds of things should I be doing to give my child a great start this school year?


The very fact that you're thinking this way indicates that your child is already going to have a great school year. Parents who care, like you, make the biggest difference of all factors, from the experience of the teacher to the quality of the curriculum. So . . . way to go!


Since the center of communication in most families is the front of the refrigerator, why not use it? Come up with three parental-involvement goals for yourself this school year. Encourage your child to come up with three goals, too. Write them down, jazz them up with some stickers or colorful decoration, and post them on your fridge throughout the school year.


This simple step goes a long way toward emphasizing to your child how important school is . . . and how seriously you take your role as your child's best coach and advisor.


Sample parent goals:


n       Provide a routine schedule. On schooldays we will get up by 7 a.m., eat breakfast at 7:15, eat dinner at 6:30, exercise for 30 minutes per day, and go to bed by 9 p.m. for the kids, 10 p.m. for teens, and 11 p.m. for the adults.


n       Limit everyone in the family to one hour per day of TV, video games and computer entertainment.


n       We will read together for 20 or 30 minutes per night.


Sample elementary student goals:


n       Do my homework after dinner without listening to music or watching TV.


n       Read (or have read to me) one book a week just for fun.


n       Do extra credit in my strongest subject to learn even more about it, and meet with the teacher once a week to see what I can do to improve in my weakest subject.



Sample high-school student goals:


n       Define my three best strengths or gifts, talk with my parents and school counselor about the careers that take the best advantage of them, and plan a curriculum path through high school and beyond that will take me where I want to go.


n       Only party with my friends one night a week; on the other weekend night, do something with my family, or just read and study on my own.


n       Volunteer to help others three hours a week.



Homework: Here are good tips for a great start to the school year from a California school district:


By Susan Darst Williams Coaching Your Child 04 2008

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