Ask yourself this question. What do I value? It is very easy in this chaotic lifestyle we live to lose sight of what we truly value. I am sure your list would have included a focus on your family, your morals, friendships, parenting your children so that they grow up with the core morals and values they will need to become a member of the community that is able to contribute in a positive and productive manner.
Did education come into mind when you listed what you value? If not maybe it has now because it has been mentioned. Where on your list of values would it be? The reason I ask this is because if ‘we’ and I refer to a society as a whole, valued education in the true sense then I believe our children would be far better off. If you listen or read any media material about education at this point in time, it is in a crisis. It may very well be with the lack of funding, resources, specialised teacher shortages and the list goes on. As a teacher, I do not even flinch when I read or hear that the quality of teachers are not good enough and it is the school's fault that students are under performing!
As a parent, I value education greatly. This is not just because I am a teacher. As a child growing up in the country, my parents taught my older brother and I about the importance of a good education. They made sure we completed our homework, helped us with our studies and at one stage, found a Maths tutor in secondary school for my brother. My parents were also interested in what we were doing at school and if there were issues, would contact the school.
As a mum, I also find myself teaching my children to value education. Sitting down every night and listening to reading, learning spelling words, times tables and completing set homework tasks can be a chore, for everyone but doing this actually shows our children we are interested in what they are doing and that we want to help them succeed. You may say why can’t this all be done at school, this is what the teacher should be doing? Correct, this is what we do at school but sometimes there needs to be some consolidation done at home. We all want our children to succeed and be the best they can be. If they are having difficulties with a concept at school, by working
the school, help your child at home so they can feel more confident when they finally grasp the concept. Speaking to your child’s teacher about various ideas on how to help at home is a great way to show your child you value their education, what they are doing and you want them to succeed. It also encourages persistence in our children and not giving up when things are difficult.
If we had a negative school experience growing up, you may actually be sending those messages to your child. Not intentionally, but unwittingly. It is important that we as a society teach our children to value education regardless of our experiences. By doing this, you may find yourself learning along the way and more importantly, sharing positive learning experiences with your own child and that can only be a good thing.
Here are some useful websites for all the family that include games and information but I know your child will enjoy them too! They will probably teach you a few things!
www.scholastic.com then click on the Parents drop down box.
www.primarygames.com is a Maths games website for children. Have a game against your child and I can guarantee there will be smiles and laughter.
Remember, the most precious thing you can give your child, is your time.