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How Parents Can Influence Children Academically
Research has proven that through many case studies a parent involvement can play a critical factor in their children academic success, and overall education. Whether if it helping a child with their homework, attending parent teacher conferences, playing a flash card game; the types of involvement comes in many forms. The parent has to create a learning environment at home for their child to do succeed. The child’s school must be actively communicative with the parents to ensure this success as well. “When schools work as a team with families to support learning, children tend to succeed not just in school, but throughout life. The most precise predictor of a student's achievement in school is neither the family income nor social status, but the extent to which that student's family is able to express achievable goals or expectations for their child’s academic achievement and it holds an incredible number of benefits. These benefits include higher grades, test scores, low behavior issues, increased level of motivation to be active in sports or other extra- curricular activities, and a contribution to creating a effective school system” ('You Can Make The Difference: The Positive Influence Of Parents On Kids' Success In School'). This discussion will aim to emphasize on the home as a learning environment, benefits of teacher involvement, parental involvement in the school, and finally, the correlation of health and education.
The Home Environment
A child’s home environment may have more influential effects than school (Hamblen). Parents have to be extra careful to monitor their own actions and communication styles around their children since they are their child’s biggest role models. “The attitudes and behavior have the greatest influence on the child. When learning is valued in the home, children will retain this knowledge. Parents who read themselves, and read to their children, send the message that reading is a priority. When a parent communicates with their children about their school assignments and consistently monitors their progress, it sends the message that education is important” (West-Olatunji et al.). Another aspect is about creating a structured home learning environment is that it is helpful to the child’s teacher as well. According to Joyce Epstein of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, “parents are generally anxious to help with their child’s academics. The teachers however need to assure the mothers and fathers of their vital role as home educators, and reassure them that they can do the job. Epstein has found that when parents are trained to help their children at home and given specific tasks to work on together, it makes the home-learning situation far more effective. When you add monitoring by the teacher and classroom follow-up, there is no limit to what the child could achieve since it takes a village to raise a child” (Epstein). Teachers could help the parents by “loaning age appropriate books, workbooks, among other materials, recommend for parents to watch a specific television program like Sesame Street or cultured films with their children and to discuss the show’s events, observing in the classroom, or by sending home suggestions for activities related to the children's schoolwork, that can be played by either parent and child, or by the child and their siblings” (Wells and Wells). The students with a strong support system such as this will most likely have a positive attitude or outlook on life, with clear and achievable academic goals.
Parental Involvement in the School
When a parent is involved in their child’s academic affairs externally, then the community becomes involved as well. “The School Development Program (SDP) consists of the involvement of the entire adult school community (parents, teachers, instructional aides, counselors, and support staff) in formulating a comprehensive school plan: school climate, assessment, instructional strategies, academic climate and goals, staff development, etc. These schools also have extensive parental involvement throughout the school building. The SDP schools have improved in: academic performance in reading and math, behavior, adjustment to school, and positive ratings of the overall classroom environment” (Wade).
The Correlation of Health and Education
In conclusion, “children benefit the most when parents, teachers and school administration have ongoing communication with one another. It fosters the child’s academic performance and social skill development and sends the message to children that their parents and teachers genuinely care for their well-being. Parental involvement is heightened in elementary school and decreases somewhat as children become more independent in some cases. However, it is critical that parents continue to communicate to the school teachers and staff throughout their children's secondary education. Parents are the primary influence in their children's lives and are their children's first teachers. No one knows the child like the parent. This is a priceless source of information and can help the child to grow in many positive ways. Parents can also encourage communication by writing personal notes to teachers to share information or obtain progress reports. Parents and teachers set good examples by speaking positively about each other to one another. This also sets the stage for a quality family-school relationship” (Newman).
Epstein, Joyce L. 'Parent Education Revisited.'. PsycCRITIQUES 35.11 (1990): n. pag. Web.
Hamblen, Karen A. 'What General Education Can Tell Us About Evaluation In Art'. Studies in Art Education 28.4 (1987): 246. Web.
Newman, Rita. 'For Parents Particularly: Parent Conferences: A Conversation between You and Your Child's Teacher'. Childhood Education 74.2 (1997): 100-101. Web.
Price, Hugh B. Achievement Matters. New York: Dafina Books/Kensington Pub. Corp., 2002. Print.
Wade, Christine E. 'The Longitudinal Effects Of After-School Program Experiences, Quantity, And Regulatable Features On Children's Social–Emotional Development'. Children and Youth Services Review 48 (2015): 70-79. Web.
Wells, Gordon, and Jan Wells. 'Learning To Talk And Talking To Learn'. Theory Into Practice 23.3 (1984): 190-197. Web.
West-Olatunji, Cirecie et al. 'Parenting Practices Among Low-Income Parents/Guardians Of Academically Successful Fifth Grade African American Children'. HMCP 12.3 (2010): 138-144. Web.
'You Can Make The Difference: The Positive Influence Of Parents On Kids' Success In School'. Today's Parent 9.1 (1995): 4. Print.