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© Gail Underwood Parker

Monday, May 7, 2012

School Bell: Celebrate Struggles: But...

The last two Mondays I explained two reasons to celebrate the struggles of schoolwork, particularly in middle school years :
1- Students hit that wall they are in a time when the grades matter far less than later in school or life.  [April 23]
2- Students who struggle learn strategies for overcoming challenges.  [April 30]

Today... the "but." Yes, celebrate Struggles BUT:
Be your child's best learning coach.

If you are a parent who does NOT have to help their child with homework:
It is essential that you find ways to challenge your children intellectually during these growth years. It is healthy for a child, while still surrounded by supportive parents, to experience challenge, frustration, even the occasional panic.  Those are opportunities to teach them ways to respond that will help them respond to other challenges, frustrations and panicked moments long beyond their academic years.

If you are a parent who DOES  have to help their child with homework:
When you are about to pull your hair at one more flash card drill, one more Venn diagram, etc., hold onto the thought that you are helping them develop systems for dealing with learning that will be in their personal learning baskets for the rest of their lives.  BUT: Touch base with your child's teacher about exploring learning assessments if you feel your child may have underlying challenges to learning or may need extra interventions to succeed.

Gather up all the tips, tricks, and strategies you can and pass them on to your children through your teaching and through your example.  If they don't need them now, they will someday.

Parents play a pivotal role in their children's attitudes toward school and learning, their awareness of learning, and their opportunities to learn and grow. Coach your child every day!

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