Student success comes from the home first. As a parent or family member, you are the child’s first teacher. The best classroom is the whole wide world and there are an infinite number of ways to help children grow as lifelong learners. Starting with at home, there are many ways families can keep their students engaged.

By Wendi Ostroff

The following list is loosely structured for all ages and can be modified up or down if the student is in elementary school or high school.

• Help your student get organized – find a space at home to complete homework that is limited in distractions
• Create goals important to you both and revisit the goals a few times a year
• Show them how to divide up their study time to have brain breaks. Use a timer
• Teach them the importance of balance between fun and work and the feeling of accomplishment when the tasks are complete
• Encourage physical activity regularly – can be a sport, a bike ride, or just a walk
• Practice healthy sleeping & eating habits
• Monitor and maybe limit screen time. This includes TV, gaming, and social media
• Acknowledge effort, be supportive and positive
• Engage in thoughtful conversation, talk about their activities and class work
• Apply something they’re learning in school with the real world
• Model the importance of reading by reading to your child and to yourself
• Engaged parents stay in the loop – be involved in their school by attending parent-teacher conferences, back-to-school nights, helping on a field trip
• Promote community service and participation in after-school clubs and programs
• Save this list and reread it to help stay on track

All these activities have value and contribute to student success. By encouraging motivation, which can be a challenge for all ages at one time or another, you are contributing to their learning skillset. This helps them grow into confident young adults.