Without a doubt, students flourish when they have the support and encouragement of their parents, but there are a number of ways that well-meaning parents unintentionally discourage their children. Eileen Huntington, co-founder of Huntington Learning Center says that providing children the right type and level of support can make all the difference in their motivation and self-esteem. “Encouragement must be genuine and positive, and although a parent’s intentions might be good, certain types of comments can send the wrong message,” says Huntington. She offers several dos and don’ts for parents when encouraging their children in school:
With summer coming to a close, families with children are gearing up to head back to school. According to Co-Founder and CEO, Eileen Huntington, of Huntington Learning Center, there are several things parents can do toward the end of summer break that make a tremendous difference in getting children mentally prepared to start the year off right. “Students need summer break to relax and recharge their batteries, but the beginning of a new grade can be a little bumpy if parents and children remain in ‘summer mode’ until that first school bell rings,” says Huntington. Luckily, a little preparation can make the back-to-school transition easier. Here are five back-to-school tips for parents and children:
If your child has experienced any difficulty in school, then you likely know well the challenge of keeping things positive amid poor grades and dwindling self-esteem. School has any number of anxieties, even for the student who sails through classes seemingly with ease. However, for the student who frequently comes upon academic road blocks, the school experience can instigate negativity, fear and other problems.
Parents often have ideas of what types of careers their children should consider once they approach college, but they are, of course, quite biased. Although adults have a lifetime of experience to draw from, they really only know their own career journey well. Parents’ intentions might be good when they suggest possible college majors and career paths, but it’s more important that they put their teens in the driver’s seat and guide them from the sidelines.
For parents of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), it can be very challenging to figure out exactly what motivates their students to study and complete homework. CEO & Co-Founder Eileen Huntington of Huntington Learning Center says that parents should help their children get to know themselves as students and embrace techniques that work for them. “While parents will find it difficult, if not impossible, to change their children’s behavior, modifications to their study habits and learning environment are far more likely to be helpful,” says Huntington. To motivate children to strive toward academic success, she suggests these five tips:
It's hard not to jump for joy when your child gets an A on a test or announces that he or she won a spelling bee at school. However, when it comes to your child's development, remember that more important than the positive end result is the road your child travelled to get there. Surely, working for that A took a commitment on your child's part. Give your child a confidence boost by letting him or her know that you're proud of his or her efforts and willingness to stick with the studying.
It is just as important to praise improvements; if your child brought his or her report card up from straight-Cs to all Bs and one C, congratulate this progress. Avoid insincere or hollow compliments. "Good job, but let's keep shooting for those As," isn't as likely to help your child feel confident and to continue taking steps in the right direction as a comment that focuses on his or her accomplishment, such as, "You've worked hard, and it's paid off. I'm proud of you for making such a big improvement."
Eileen Huntington, co-founder of Huntington Learning Center says, “It’s perfectly natural that by the time a student reaches high school, he or she may have discovered a passion for one or two subjects or hobbies. One of these areas may soon become your teen’s college major or even evolve into a career path one day, so in the high school years, parents should think about how to encourage their teens to make the most of what they’re good at.” Huntington offers tips on how can parents help their teen flourish by nurturing his or her strengths.
Most parents recognize the importance of time management, strong communication, good listening and other study skills, but what about leadership? “Your child doesn’t have to aspire to be the next president of the United States to benefit from the lessons of leadership,” says Eileen Huntington, co-founder of Huntington Learning Center. “Activities and programs that instill leadership help teach children about perseverance, conflict resolution, building one’s character, goal setting and more.” Huntington offers parents these tips to help their child develop leadership skills:
When children are very young, they are naturally curious, inventing games, songs and stories, seeking answers to endless questions, and much more. Yet as children become older, some lose some of their creativity. Instead, they look to teachers and parents for direction and approval, concerning themselves with "right" answers instead of appreciating the process by which they come to conclusions.
School doesn’t come easy for every child. It can be a challenging experience, and one that requires persistence and patience. Unfortunately, however, when school work becomes overly difficult, many children lose faith in themselves as students. Left uncorrected, this can have a lasting detrimental effect on a child’s performance in school and overall attitude and demeanor. To pave the way for school success, parents should work to build their children’s self-confidence. Confident children do not shy away from hard work and will generally see failure as an opportunity to make changes and try again. How can you develop your child’s confidence? Here are several tips: