Top 10 ways you can help at home
1. Create an environment in your home that encourages learning.
This will be a major influence on how well your children do in school. Provide them with as many different opportunities to become excited about learning as you can.
2. Provide your children with a well-balanced life.
Establish routines when it comes to learning, homework, meeting deadlines and be exposed to a wide range of activities and experiences.
3. Read to your children every day and encourage them to read extensively.
Most of the learning your children do in school involves reading. Read to your children to teach them about reading, expand and enrich their vocabularies, and broaden their experiences. Ask them lots of questions about the story and where possible relate this to their own lives. It is about making reading a life long habit. Remember you are your children’s best role model.
4. Show your children how to be organised.
Children who are organised find it much easier to succeed in school. Show your children how to be organised by using such things as checklists and calendars. Encourage them to pack their own bags and to take responsibility for time management.
5. Encourage your children to be interested in what is happening in the wider world and this will help with classroom conversations and participation.
Talk to your children about everyday events e.g. a trip to the supermarket can involve comparing prices, looking at packaging, budgeting, new products, reading labels.
6. Help your children learn how to tackle homework.
Doing homework reinforces what your children learn in school. Help them learn what tasks to do first and how to plan their time. Encourage them not to rush through their homework but to consider every task a learning experience. Encourage them to have a regular time for homework and provide a place that is free of distractions.
7. Talk to your children about school.
Your children spend hours in school every day. A lot can happen during that time. Show that you are genuinely interested in their day by asking questions about what they did, e.g. “What book did you read today”, “Tell me about the picture you drew, etc”, and talking with them about the work they bring home. When problems occur, work with your children to find solutions.
8. Develop a good relationship with your children’s teachers.
Good communication between home and school helps children do well in school and makes it easier to address problems. Be sure to attend parent-teacher conferences, visit your children’s classroom, and if possible volunteer to help at events.
9. Look for maths learning opportunities in everyday life.
This could include using money, measuring ingredients, counting steps, fence posts, cars, reading calendars, reading maps and working out distances, organising parties, sharing items equally, board games.
10. Provide your children with experiences that promote learning.
E.g. make a garden, look at an engine, cooking, sewing, fixing things, go to the beach, watch a building being built . . . there is no limit.
Time is the most valuable thing you can give to your children.