My child had a rough first semester. She wasn’t excited to attend school and her grades have suffered as a result. How can we start fresh second semester and help her feel encouraged about school and about learning?
Communication, communication, communication! Communication between the teacher, principal and parent MUST take place! Be proactive!
Call a meeting with at least the teacher and parent to discuss strategies that parents can do at home to help with the preparation of next semester. Does the teacher know that your child is unhappy? Teachers are not mind readers…They get close sometimes, but it is a good practice to visit with the teachers when issues arise.
Once again, make sure that Christmas break is not a free for all…especially for the last few days before school starts. Make sure children get back into a routine so the transition between break and school beginning is not overwhelming. bedtimes, breakfast, bathing, and etc. are important to get back in the habit BEFORE the break ends.
School can be an overwhelming place for children. Many environmental factors surround a child. Trying to learn can be difficult if other basic needs aren’t met.
At school, the child not only is in an academic environment, but a social environment as well. Having conversations with your child of why school was so difficult the first semester can help. Making a list of the challenges and reasons why things were made difficult can help you come up with a plan for your child to follow when things get tough.
Try visiting with the child’s teacher. Ask:
- How are they fitting in socially?
- Do they feel included within the classroom?
Staying closely connected each week with the situation will ensure help stay on top of it before things begin to get difficult. Have weekly debriefing sessions and make sure things are staying positive with your child. Once you realize things are getting difficult be proactive and step in and make arrangements to visit with the teacher on ways to work together to ensure school remains a positive place to learn. Ensure your child understands that people care about their well being and school is a safe place to be.
In order to learn, the student needs to feel safe, secure and comfortable in the learning environment. Once the child feels safe, and comfortable with the learning environment, things will most likely improve.
This is a really difficult situation, motivation has a lot to do with student success. As a parent and a teacher, I would really encourage my child to try to have an open and fresh perspective.
As a teacher I always come back with a clean slate ready to start off second semester and I want my students to do the same. There is a lot of pressure in the Spring to get in everything with the possibilities of snow days and the upcoming state tests so it can be a stressful time, but remember Summer is just around the corner. Really encourage your child to stay on top of things at the beginning of the semester.
Ask about their school work, if they are struggling, have them attend tutoring so they don’t get behind. When a student falls behind at the beginning of the semester it can quickly snowball into weeks of playing catch up and never feeling caught up and ahead. This can be a big drain on motivation and excitement.
If you’re like us, you are probably constantly on the hunt looking for ways to improve your child’s education and help them reach their full potential. Our anonymous panel of teachers have some great advice. If you have a question for the teachers, email us and we’ll send it to them. Then look for your answer here. Email to: info(at)SouthwestMissouriMoms.com.