Parents can support their child throughout their school years and positively impact academic outcomes by seeking to increase their child’s enjoyment and belief in the importance of learning and enhancing their general wellbeing.
Research has found that parent engagement through positive communication is much more effective in improving student well-being and academic success than monitoring homework. Key strategies throughout these years are based on communication between the parent and the child about:
- parental expectations for education
- the value and enjoyment of learning
- learning strategies
- links between school work and current events and other topics
- fostering educational aspirations
- plans for the future.
Secondary School years present a number of challenges for students and their families. The growing complexity of the knowledge and skills is accompanied by a number of decisions around academic pathways and future careers. Alongside this is the adolescent desire for greater independence.
These conversations can be built around:
- discussing options for post-secondary education
- providing learning resources such as books and newspapers
- taking their children to social events and places that contribute to learning.
The aim of this communication is to foster the child’s decision making and problem solving whilst affirming their growing desire for autonomy and independence as well as their improving academic ability. Students will benefit from being able to independently assess their own goals and anticipate the results and consequences of their actions. The ability to learn from their successes and failures will build a resilience that will benefit them beyond their schooling years.