HOW ENGAGING PARENTS IN SCHOOLS EMPOWERS CHILDREN
While growing up, children look up to their parents the most. They want to be doctors and lawyers just like their mothers and fathers. Providing a good role model and much needed support during the education process is of great significance for the empowerment of children. School brings lots of change, and it is definitely a sensitive period in which a child needs understanding. That is why we offer some ways how to achieve that.
Include parents in the teaching process
Lesson plans and programs go beyond something that a parent can do. However, there are some aspects where parents can have an important role. When a teacher finds themselves in a situation where he can’t fulfil the needs of each and every student, this is where parents come in.
It is completely understandable that parents know their children better. That is why they are able to offer some good advice on how to work with their child in order to achieve better results and progress. Teachers and parents work as a team, and all of that has as its final goal to ensure that children have a high-quality education and classes that they won’t be intimidated by. All of this can be included in parent-teacher conferences, which are mandatory.
Teach parents the approaches they can use at home as well
Contrary to the previous claims, we can also say that parents as well sometimes don’t know how to approach a certain situation. In order for them to be the kind of support their child needs, it is a good idea to teach them some tips and tricks on how to work with children at home. Normally, their home is an environment they feel less threatened in. So, why not use that?
For starters, figure out what your child responds to best, and take it from there. At lower levels and at a young age, do use lots of practical means like toys, pictures, figures, cartoons… This will keep them focused and make them memorise better since it is something they are already interested in. Once they learn the basics, when moving on to more serious topics, use adequate vocabulary and types of exercises. Always be one step above their current level of knowledge, which will keep them motivated and also serve as a guideline for you. It is a tactic that lots of teachers use, so why not try it at home as well.
Give parents access to children’s school progress
This can automatically have a bad connotation. However, it is quite the opposite. This should be done in a non-official manner, so the kids don’t feel stressed and pressured. By allowing parents to access the school management software you give them the option to learn how and when to help their children. They will have information about the child’s progress and achievement, which is important because kids cannot explain the issues sometimes, but parents can step in and push them a little.
It is important to note that parents should be taught the right way to do this. Using this software to embarrass or punish the child in any way is not its purpose. Acceptance and support will, on the other hand, help them understand that parents are on their side and their only goal is to be a part of the learning process.
Organize activities that include both children and parents
Having parents and children together for many activities in and outside school is something that has started to be incorporated a lot in schools all over the world. And there is a good reason behind it. In the past, teachers and parents were considered authority figures, and although respect should still be present, their role has changed. By including the parents in some activities or even classes, children will get the sense that they are their peers; thus, they will feel less scared and more eager to learn.
This also refers to plays and musicals that the school makes for holidays; preparing speeches for the end of the school year, or even making costumes and posters. One more aspect parents should be included in is choosing meals, extracurricular activities or even school uniforms. Although they may not have formal experience in creating lesson plans, they most certainly are qualified enough to make decisions about the daily routine and health of their children. It may seem like a trivial thing to be a part of, but parents will feel like they were a part of the whole institution and again it will make children feel safer and more in touch with them.
Times change, and although at one point involvement of parents was unnecessary, now we understand that it can have more positive than negative effects. Of course, some part of their education process should be left to teachers and children alone, but with others, parents can most definitely contribute.
Story Isabel William