How Parents Can Help Children Learn|
Vivian Franz, Ph.D.
- Talk with your child.
- Set aside some time each day just to talk and to share.
- Listen to your child.
- Get in the habit of looking at your child while you are talking together.
- Teach your child to look at the teacher when he/she is talking. This practice helps us to focus on what is being
said. We learn more.
- SPEND TIME TOGETHER.
- Read to or with your child. The young child needs the practice, and all children benefit from the shared time and the
- Go places together -- the park, the museum, or the zoo. Even short bus rides are interesting.
- Go to the public library on a regular basis. Check out books and records for the entire family.
- Make games and buy games. An old catalog and a good imagination can brighten many a rainy day. Buy
games that require thinking and extend skills.
- Go to the store together to buy reference books and old-favorite hardback books to keep in the family for years.
(Buy lots of paperbacks, too, -- more reading for the money.)
- MAINTAIN GOOD HEALTH -- MENTAL, EMOTlONAL, AND PHYSICAL.
- Arrange routine trips to the doctor, dentist, or other specialist as needed. Healthy children learn better.
- Have the family maintain a regular schedule, with meals at about the same time every day and a set bedtime.
Schedules help build security and stability for the child. Have a half hour of quiet time just before bed.
- Permit your child to grow in making decisions and in taking responsibility. Help him to be responsible
for decisions he makes. Assume that he will make some mistakes.
- Supervise his television watching and the movies he sees. Not everything that is available is good. Discuss what he will
see and when he will see it.
- Show that you care. Be aware of both your verbal and your non-verbal behavior. If we say one thing but act out another, we
cause conflict in the growing child. Be consistent.
- TAKE CONCRETE STEPS TO LEARN ABOUT PARENTING.
- We aren't born knowing how to be effective parents.
- Read. The library has many books on child growth and development. There are books on how to work with the schools, on
how to facilitate learning for your child. There are excellent articles in popular magazines. If you have never learned to
browse in the library, it's not too late. Cultivate in yourself habits you would like to cultivate in your children.