Five Ways to Improve Parent Involvement in K-12 Learning
Parenting is job which although does not require any special degree but still is the most highly deserving job. When you are parent you are sitting on a roller coaster ride with many highs and lows. But still the feeling is unique and incomparable with even most expensive thing in the world.
And as they say we cannot get anything free in this world .In same way with parenting comes the great responsibility of nurturing the child .The child when is born is like bud and how much it will blossom to a flower depends upon the water given by parents; in this case the water is love, care and attention given to them.
As per study the child can recognize his mother's voice from her womb and his father's voice after two weeks of his birth; that is the kind of bonding a child shares with his parent. If parents get involved with activities of child right from his birth then they can even differentiate through his cries the feeling of child .This is the reason it is said that mother is first teacher and home is the first school of a child. But as child takes his first step to main school the involvement of parent in his studies starts decreasing as parents think that they have selected the best school and rest is up to the teachers. The lack of time in this fast forward time fuels this thinking. There are some ways which when practiced by school and parent can increase the involvement.
1) Parent Child activities in school:
Apart from the regular parents teacher meeting .Schools should organize the activities involving parents like celebrating father's day or mother's day so that parents come to school and analyze at ground level how their ward behaves in school, the school atmosphere ,the comfort level and also the interest area of child. Next time if his child is not able to perform in any area or has some problem or there is sudden change in his or her behavior the parents can easily guess the reason. These kinds of activities are frequently done in play school and are proved very fruitful for the school beginners. This increases the child parent bonding not only in academic level but at every level. The sharing of their feelings with parents will become habit of child which he will carry throughout his life.
2) Organizing field trip with parents:
Schools should make changes in their regular academic courses by making space for some practical activities. They can organize a trip to educational place where they can ask parent to accompany their ward. This will increase the interaction of parent. As in today's life the trips to parks, monuments and these kinds of places are replaced by outing to malls. An weekend outing is just restricted to malls where parents goes busy in shopping and children in playing with toys. These visits will not only increase the knowledge of student; it will also be refreshing for parent as well as for child as they can grasp the detailed knowledge of place.
3) Celebrating festivals at school:
India is country of festivals and as well as country where people of many religions live. These religions have many festivals but in our so called society we only celebrate the festival which belongs to our religion like Hindu will celebrate Holi ,Diwali etc,Muslim Eid,Christian Christmas and the list continues. There is great need to change this thinking for obvious reason i.e. unity. This to some extent can be done by a small initiative from schools. Schools can arrange to celebrate all festivals class wise with equal enthusiasms in school by sending invites to parents. Also school can request any Muslim parent to bring any eatables for students of his child's class. They can come and celebrate the festival together and makes students understand the importance of celebrating a particular festival. This can be done for every religion.
4 )Social Media:
Social Media is need of today as it has now spread like wild fire. Schools can take advantage of this fire to roast their food. They can make grade wise group of Watsup ,Facebook etc where the admin is either school principal or class teacher so that even when parents are busy in their offices or they are out of town for some important work they can stay connected with their child ‘s academic activities. Teachers can share information like important activities that are done or to be done in school, upcoming events, and upcoming holidays. They can also share the details of class toppers or any outstanding achievement done by any student. These activities are regularly done in play schools and are very beneficial as parent can also ask teacher any query they have in mind without waiting for parents meeting day.
5) Career counseling sessions.
Ultimately whatever we are doing in our school the main destination is a good career. Sometimes students are so lost in their regular studies and routine that they are unable to think what exactly they want to become. The early they realize their dreams the easier it becomes to achieve them .Also in our stereo typed society sometimes a career is burdened on shoulder of student without their wish like son or daughter of doctor has to become doctor or if a child my friend is taking engineering coaching then my child should also do the same .Considering the situation schools can organize the career counseling sessions with parent, teacher and student ;as in child ‘s career parent and teacher are the two most important pillars and when they sit together with student to discuss about the likes and interest ;it is where normal for student to open up and share his views about his future plans. He can choose neither a career which is given him in legacy nor a career which is forwarded to him like his genes. Since this career is chosen by him, he will be self motivated to achieve it. Nevertheless parents also know what their child wants and can make future plans for him be it financially or academically .They knows where the dreams of his child are.
As you sow so shall you reap; if parents involve with their child academically they will get the student who is focused and a performer .Happy Parenting!