Simply hoping for the best when your child is dropped off for school hardly acts as insurance for a productive and academically successful day. Where most parents understand that this willy-nilly approach to school success is unlikely to produce much, it is often the manner in which a lot of parents proceed. Being more involved in a child’s schooling, beginning with daycare, is understood by teachers, parents and educational experts alike to be the most effective way to ensure academic success for years to come. Both the National Parent Teacher Association and the US Department of Education, among others, have reported that children whose parents participate more regularly in their child’s school have higher test scores, better attendance and are likely to enjoy school more.
So how does a busy parent become more involved in their child’s preschool or after school program?
- Attend open houses and parent’s night making sure to introduce yourself. Get to know the people and environment that your child experiences on a daily basis.
- Volunteer. Even those that work full-time can find time to get involved. Offer to prepare learning materials at home, partnering with your child in the activity. Sign-up to help with after-hour events like school carnivals or fund-raising activities. Let your child’s teacher know that you are interested in lending a hand.
- Work with other parents. Find out if your child’s school or after-school program have a resource center for parents of students. If not, see about starting one. Team up with other parents where you can network and share information regarding child care, play dates and school events.
- Share what you know. Musicians, artists and professionals of all types are welcome additions to a child’s day. Guest speakers and demonstrators of all types can get involved and have fun sharing their knowledge with children of all ages.