We cannot believe the children have been at school for nearly a whole term!
Our work in school, tutoring and running our website has been very busy and we have been reflecting on all the challenges of starting a new academic year, or a new school, not just for children but also for their parents and families.
We have been talking to parents who are feeling concerned about how their child is coping with the learning content in their new year group. They are worrying about whether their child will meet the ‘expected standard’ by the end of the year. Many have already started to think about their child’s move to a new school next year and how they can help them with this. On top of all this, children are navigating new friendships and getting to know their new teachers.
In schools, we see that teachers are working their socks off! They are getting to know their new pupils and constantly thinking about how each individual child learns and how to help them to be the best they can be.
In the last few weeks, everyone seems to be settling down and the ‘angst’ of new beginnings seems to be lessening.
We have been reflecting on all of this. We have both taught for many years and seen so many children, including our own and the children of our friends, go through the education system. We thought that a few of our reflections might be helpful as we come to the end of the first term of the year.
Talking and listening….
Keep the communication channels open with your child. Show them that you really listen to them as they talk about feelings, friendships, worries, hopes and fears. You do not always have to cheer them up and sometimes they just need to tell you about a worry and then they feel better – you do not need to solve everything for them.
They will learn to solve their own problems if we respect and love them while resisting the temptation to ‘rescue’ them from every uncomfortable feeling.
We really only become resilient from overcoming things. This could just be by keeping on trying when we are learning something new and we get things wrong. Remind your child that if they were only given things to do they had already mastered then they will not be learning anything new!
We all compare ourselves to others – it is part of life for everyone. However, it is often not very helpful! Everyone can only do their best, and that applies to parents as well as their children.
Try to encourage your child to think about what they could do back then, and what they can do now. Encourage them to see the progress they are making and help them to link this to the effort they have put in. This will empower them to keep trying and discover the amazing feeling you get when working hard reaps rewards.
One of the things that we seem to be seeing more and more of is that everyone is always ‘on the go’! We are also hearing from children, parents and teachers that many of us are feeling rather exhausted.
It is important to remember the importance of resting, getting good sleep, eating well and relaxing. Don’t feel guilty about doing nothing and letting the children amuse themselves occasionally.
This is good for everyone: we all need to recharge and take care of our wellbeing. Children whose lives are packed with activities may begin to use school as their ’downtime’, but they need to be ready for learning. Rest, relaxation and a bit of peace are key to this.
Education is not a race, and developing a love of learning is the key to helping your child. Expose them to as many different role models, experiences and new ideas as you possibly can. Gradually they will find their own path, with your support.
Have a fun and restful Christmas break, and remember, we are always here to support you to help your child.
Sue and Maryanne x
Visit our website: Tutor Your Child.
Please contact us if you would like more information about how to help your child: email@example.com.