Education starts at school and continues at home. There are plenty of things that you, as parents, can do at home to help your child along a strong developmental path. Here are some helpful tips to give your child an advantage at home, which will transfer to the classroom.
Read, Read, Read
Reading is an important cognitive function for children to learn. Take every opportunity you can to read with your child. Make the kitchen, living room, and their bedrooms, into “reading zones” and devote some time every day to reading short stories, homework, or anything that is particularly challenging for them.
Make it Fun!
Games can be exceptional learning tools. Board games, card games, memory games and word games subtly engage a child in learning essential problem solving skills, while ensuring they have fun! Showing them how much fun learning can be will make them more eager to learn.
Computers, tablets, and mobile devices have access to all sorts of educational resources that can help your child learn in a collection of different ways. From games to writing to reading, technology offers a number of different ways to engage kids as they learn. Don’t be scared to let them get used to technology, the sooner they learn about the devices, the more comfortable they will be when using them in the future.
Encouragement is Golden
Remember to encourage your children through the learning process. Positive reinforcement goes a long way in helping a developing mind absorb information. Mistakes should not be cause for concern. Instead, view them as learning opportunities and help your child realize where, and how, they can improve.
Count, Write, Read
Practice, repetition, and routine help a young mind develop skills faster, and become more comfortable with the skills they already have. Set time aside to count with your children, let them write stories for you, and read them together. This little bit of effort can make a world of difference in the long run.
Here are some fun activities/tips/tricks that make learning engaging, as well as, informative.
- Set aside time to write and read short stories to each other.
- Find a board game that the whole family can play and have some fun (board games usually involve problem solving, math, writing, and many other transferable skills).
- Read from a variety of sources – expose your children to different ways of writing and thinking
- Play rhyming games – rhyming games help with improvisational skills and vocabulary.
- Don’t limit yourself to a certain writing or vocabulary level – try new things and see what develops quicker than others.
- Write different styles – experiment with different styles to broaden their skills.
- Read together – dedicate time to read separate stories in the same room or the same story
- Encourage them to explore art – different artistic expressions can go simultaneously with higher-level skills. Poetry is relatable to writing as much as music is to math.
- Talk to your kids. Discuss what they did that day in school, what they liked, what they didn’t.
- Make every day activities educational – engage your child to skim the paper for things, help you make shopping lists, or dictate recipes. Little things like this build transferable skills that help in a collection of different areas.
- Encourage their curiosity.
- Motivate with reward, applause, or recognition.
- Routines are good – they set boundaries, time limits, schedules, and things to look forward to.
- Talk about word families. Point out words that are related to other words and help build an early relationship with language, logic, and deduction.
- Listen to music. Music can train children in subconscious, subtle manners – making them more receptive to lessons they may consider boring otherwise.
- Look up words – don’t let your children remain confused. If they come across words they don’t understand, help them look it up and work through them.
- Share family stories and talk regularly.
- Go on adventures. Going camping, to museums, or sporting events exposes them to a completely new world of excite to experience.
- Play games like I-Spy, where you engage multiple senses, deduction and problem solving.
- Help your child keep a diary. Read it through with them, as this is both a good way to learn writing skills, speaking skills, and reading skills.