Childhood is all about learning and parents are but a child’s first teachers. We all know how just about everything that a child learns from walking to cycling to swimming is easier and quicker if a parent is there to support the child and we do find parents engaged and involved during these early years. However when it comes to literacy, one often finds parents slipping into the role of ‘sleeping partners’ relying entirely on the school to do the teaching. I find that this stepping back adversely impacts learning and most children without adequate parental support fail to meet grade level expectations.
Parents are reluctant to be partners in their child’s learning primarily due to:
- The implicit faith they have in the school and their reluctance to interfere in the child’s learning.
- The feeling that since they lack adequate training in teaching, it is best left to experts- the teachers at school.
- While parents’ faith in our teachers’ competence is well placed, we would like to assure our parents that their involvement in their child’s learning will never be viewed as interference at Ganges.
- Parents can and should support their child’s learning by remaining ‘in the loop’, creating at home an atmosphere that is conducive to learning, reinforcing at home what has been taught at School, providing emotional support to the child and emphasizing on the value of learning.
- Even when parents know that they should support their child’s learning, they often stay away as they don’t know how to help the child. Some of the questions that riddle parents are: How do I get my child to read? How much TV time is okay? What is the role of sports in learning?
- We do address these concerns during our orientation sessions and coffee mornings.
- Parents can also access the best writings on the subject by the click of a mouse. But when it comes to parenting, there is such an ocean of writing out there that even an enthusiastic parent surfing the net can find himself at sea.
- To simplify things, we do extensive research, separate the wheat from the chaff and post articles that are of a high quality and of relevance to learning in the Indian context.
These articles are from credible sources like the Education Week and the Guardian and are quite informative and insightful. While they are all by academics and experts, one size does not fit all – so parents should use their own discretion in using the ideas given.
While there are enough pop ups on every site reminding us which tea to buy or which movie to watch, articles on learning do not have visibility as they are not considered ‘hot’ enough. We are therefore posting them on the Ganges website for parents to read at their convenience.
I hope you visit our parenting corner from time to time and help yourself to the wealth of information that the articles contain.