Great parents make great decisions. Great decisions make great parents. The new school year is here, and with the new year is an opportunity to assist our young people in making this a successful one. Yes, success is relative to the goal, and I will offer a few suggestions here to help determine the goal, achieve the goal, and allow for a more connected, agreeable year academically for everyone.
Sit with your young people and determine what the goals are academically for the year. Some mistakes are made in making the grades the goal, but grades are the result, not the goal. Grades are the result of goals, planning, and effort. Grades are the result of goals made, committed to, and followed through.
Goal-Introductions between parent and teachers
Let the teachers know who you are, how to reach you, when to reach you, and give them the freedom to do what they do best for your young person. It can be a letter, call, email, text or face to face. This is a statement of commitment to your young person, and the teacher. One more post in the fence. One more boundary. One more connection.
Goal-Introduce yourself to your young person. Again.
I know, I know. Your kids know you. And, you know them. Take a few moments to remind them that you are there, you care, they matter, and that you love them enough to get on the same page with them before the chaos can exist. Let them know what you went through, reassure them of their ability to do well, and then agree on how you will approach the coming school year and all of its issues and concerns. Talk to them about homework, social media, friends, siblings, and bullying. Yes, talk to them about not being a bully, not allowing bullying, and what to do if bullied. Talk to them about classroom behavior, hallway behavior, and even locker room behavior. Talk to them about dealing with teachers, administrators, and other parents. Talk to them about safety concerns, how to deal with emergencies, and defining what an emergency really is. Where to go, who to call, what number to call, what to do if you can not be reached, and how to get back and forth from school.
This is a hole that needs to be quickly and proactively filled. Do this immediately. Figure out how you will know homework assignments given. Determine a plan for scheduling big projects being handled, a plan for following up with each other when assigned, when worked on, when work is done, and how it went. Make a point to check in weekly with the student and the teacher. This prevents 23rd hour scrambling to get projects done, getting projects handed in, or even running last minute for items needed, researching done, or dropping off at school on the designated due date. Make a plan for the daily assignments due today, tomorrow, and this week. Settle into a pattern of following up and knowing current standing with each class. NO surprises if we are always aware and connected.
Goal- Time management
Each student has 168 hours to get done whatever is scheduled for them. Each student has the same 168 hours. The 4.0 + gpa student has the same 168 as the 1.5 – gpa student. It is what they do with that 168 that determines that gpa number. Having a study plan will make it easier to succeed, and will help the student, teacher, parent, and coach understand where time is spent, where to find more time, and what areas require more time. The greatest excuse for academic failure is “I do not have enough time”. The truth is simply “What are you doing with your time?” Manage your time, schedule your time, check in, and stay connected to where your time is spent. Spend it wisely, and be aware of it.
Love daily. Love often. Love loudly. Love unconditionally. Love to boundary if needed, love to guide in advance, and love to make sure that they know that they matter. While you are at it, love the teachers too. They deserve it, and will appreciate it.
If you need a study plan, there is a plan on www.loveprints.us under 168 plan. It details the weekly check in and connections between student, teacher, parents, and coaches. It is a complete plan for time management, updates, and forward goal setting.
Great parents make great decisions. Great decisions make great parents.
I hope this helps. Good luck in your decisions.