Even though children tend to seek independence once they hit their teens and pre-teens, parental support is still essential for their peace of mind and overall academic success. Kids are less likely to ask for this help and support openly, and could possibly even react negatively when they notice their parents clearly trying to involve themselves with their studies. However, there are plenty of ways to truly show your children that you care and support them all the way. As kids start middle school, it’s the ideal time to explore these practices and find what works the best for your family.
1. Meet the Teachers and Attend Conferences
Once the school starts, there will be a back-to-school night, which is a great place to start in order to offer support to your child. This will allow the parents to meet the teachers and learn what each of them expects from their students. There will also be regular parent-teacher conferences held, and it’s recommended that you attend them all to keep track of your child’s progress. Of course, if you feel that you need more information about your child’s studies and behavior, you can request conferences with the teachers whenever you find it necessary. That way, you’ll stay on top of your child’s middle school experience without having to “bother” them with questions too much.
2. Learn More About the School
In order to understand your child better when they talk about their school experience, it’s recommended that you get familiar with the school grounds as well. What’s more, it would be really helpful to learn more about the school by visiting its website and maybe even checking out available teachers’ websites as well. On the school’s website, you’ll find plenty of useful information such as dates for events, school calendar, important phone numbers, and so on, so that you can be in tune with what is going on. Sometimes, kids forget to keep track of certain events and testing dates; you can then step in and remind them of the schedule, thus helping them maintain a good record.
3. Provide Support with Homework
When they start middle school, children will suddenly have to deal with more homework than they were used to. Now, your job is not to do their homework for them but you can make it easier for them to create a better schedule and study routine that will help the kids manage the bigger workload easier. Make sure that you create a proper work area for them and if you notice them struggling with the work, suggest the routines and schedules they could use. Also, it’s important to leave your kids alone while they’re working but make it a point to check in on them once in a while, just to make sure they’re not distracted.
4. Suggest Fun School Involvement
It’s not very good for kids to focus only on their school work, especially when they start middle school. That said, they can benefit a lot from extracurricular activities, especially those dealing with sports and physical activity. And if you’re looking for a way to get your child more engaged in both school and fitness, encouraging them to take part in school fun run events might be a great way to keep them entertained and focused on a specific goal. These fun runs are basically volunteer-based events meant as fundraisers to help raise money for the schools as well as allow the children to explore their own leadership and fitness skills. The laps and races are fun and hassle-free and very easy to organize thanks to the user-friendly online platform.
5. Take Time to Talk to Your Kids
Most parents tend to ask their kids “how was school” but the answer is usually not too detailed. More often than not, kids will reply with something vague as “fine.” However, in order to learn more about what’s happening to them at school and the experience they have, it’s important that you make time for actual conversations while you’re all relaxing at home after a long day. Start with more specific questions about certain subjects and topics, relating to your own school experience to break the ice and get the kids to open up.
No one says that parents have it easy; while it’s important to stay involved and offer support to your kids, you mustn’t come off as too controlling and bossy. However, kids don’t have it easy either, especially since entering middle school is a big change for them. So, don’t forget to be patient, caring, and loving, and communicate with your children in a positive, honest, and transparent manner.
Carrie Davis is writer and blogger from Europe. She is very passionate about family, fashion, health and lifestyle. Carrie writes mostly lifestyle articles, but also you’ll find her in home improvement and other niches.