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A New School Year: Help Your Child Excel

School is important in many ways. Children not only develop academically and intellectually, but they also develop socially as they learn to deal with challenging situations. Kids that do well in all aspects of school tend to be more successful. Children that struggle often lack the same skills and opportunities later in life.

As a parent, there is a tremendous responsibility to ensure that your child is successful. So whether your child is attending public, private, or being homeschooled here some strategies to help get the school year started on the right foot.

Help your child academically with these strategies:

1. Stress the importance of school and schoolwork. Require that homework be completed before other activities are permitted such as leisure, hobbies, or video games. Set expectations and help your child to meet them. Teach them how to study for tests. Consider giving rewards for high performance.

2. Create a good environment for studying. Today, even kindergarteners have homework in certain locations. Help them complete their work by eliminating clutter and chaos.

* By providing a good place to work, you're showing that homework and school are important.

3. Be encouraging. Children naturally love to impress their parents. Be encouraging and show your pride. When children are obviously underperforming, get to the root cause.

4. Be involved. Know your child's teachers. Be aware of their grades and progress in school. Ensure that your kids know that you know. Just making the effort to stay informed will make a difference.

* If your children think you don't care, they are less likely to care themselves.

Help your child socially in these ways:

1. Help them with their social skills. The ability to relate and successfully deal with others is perhaps the most important of all life skills. Give them advice and support along the way.

* Many smaller children don't have the slightest idea how to approach someone new and start a conversation. Teach your child how to make friends.

2. Be understanding. Teenagers are stressed and very concerned with their reputation amongst their peers. Of course, it seems silly to you now. But was it silly to you back in the day? Keep that in mind. Guide with the wisdom you have gained through life but remember these years can be difficult in establishing personal identity for your teen.

3. Allow them to pick out their clothes. Children of all ages can be concerned with their appearance. Take them shopping. Then, let them choose what they want to wear each day (within reason and within proper dress codes, etc.).

Use these techniques to help your child with extracurricular activities:

1. Encourage participation. Clubs, sports, plays, and music are all great ways to pad the transcript while getting involved in safe, supervised activities. We all are unaware of our hidden strengths and talents without a little exploration. Encourage your children to discover interests and talents.

2. Volunteer. Depending on your child's age, they'll either love or hate the idea of you volunteering at their school. There are many opportunities to volunteer for classroom activities, field trips, fund raisers, and other activities.

* Ask the school about volunteer opportunities for parents.

Helping your child excel in all aspects of an academic setting is an important part of being a parent. Success in school is helpful later in life. Good academic performance provides a great range of options in the future. Social success ensures that your child is able to make friends and work with others successfully.

Success tends to breed success. Make the effort to support your child's schooling. Let them know that it's important and you care. This is one way to have a huge impact on the quality of their lives now and forever.

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