Updated: Jan 11
1. Put in the time when your children are little.
You have a small window of opportunity to use to set your children up for success. And surprisingly this time occurs before they ever set foot in formal schooling.
Spending time talking with them improves their ability to speak, listen and comprehend.
Reading to them to increases their vocabulary and therefore their comprehension.
Playing with them helps ensure you have positive credits in your love bank account. (Think about how you're inclined to be co-operative with those who are kind to you, fun to be around and want to spend time with you.)
And if you model that learning is fun your child will be more likely to see learning as an integral part of life .
Its surprising how many learning opportunities you can link to everyday activities through play.
e.g. The yellow carriage fell off when you reached the straight piece of track. What about if we tried putting it at the front, rather than at the back? I wonder how many carriages we can add to our train altogether.
It can be as simple as drawing attention to the fact that your child's socks match the red carriage.
For specific ideas for linking learning to everyday activities go to the following link below:
2. Be positive about your child's education
Education can provide a positive life chance if you best support it.
I found those parents who were positive about all aspects of their children's education, including their teachers, had a much higher chance of having children who valued learning.
One little thing I observed over years of watching children, who were engaged learners, and those who weren't...
Those parents who were critical of teachers in front of their children,
often had children who valued learning less.
If you think about it, it doesn't take Einstein to work out if the Seller of Education: "The Teacher," is rubbished is front of children, what the teacher has to say, (the product they're selling:) "Education" becomes tarnished, by default.
Children are quick to spot mixed messages.
3. As your children grow up, watch out who they hang around with and ensure that their peer group also see education as important.
To be honest, as my children grew up, I never worried about them getting into trouble with those who were succeeding in life, I worried about them getting into trouble with those who weren't.
And you don't have to be obvious by criticising your children's friends. That's likely to create a wedge between you and your child. Something simple you can do is make it easier for them to spend time with positive influences rather than negative ones.
For example: Get them involved in a sport rather than have them hanging at a mate's place playing video games. Invite friends over to play and include their parents where possible. This provides an opportunity to help maintain some control as your children get older. If you can discuss with other parents ahead of time what are reasonable levels of freedom you're less likely to have your children play one parent against the other.
Something to consider is: Nowadays children are so socially connected to one another, if they don't like what you're saying, they can just go and stay elsewhere at a mate's. Try and ensure the mates, and their families, share similar values to you.
For more parenting ideas go to:
Disclaimer: Best Parenting Advice provides some examples of what worked for me and you are welcome to use them as you see fit but you do so at your own risk. This site does not guarantee that information suggested will work in every instance or with every child.