THE CRITICAL ROLE OF PARENTS IN A CHILD’S EDUCATION
The cliché "It takes a village to raise a child," is applicable to the division of educational roles between parent and teacher. Each parent's role in education does not stop when the child enters school. The parent provides the foundation on which teachers are able to build further educational structures.
Schools recognize the importance of early childhood learning as preparation for a good educational experience. It was found that kindergartners who had preschool experience were more classroom-ready than their peers who had not attended preschool. Schools alsoknow the value of parents as a child's first teachers, and matches families with a parenting mentor who can make suggestions and provide parenting tools.
Many parents actively teach their children life skills, but their example of how to live life may be even more important. If children see parents reading, they are more likely to want to read. If parents read aloud to them, children learn that books have stories and information that can be fun. If parents are organized and take care of things at home, the children are more likely to be organized. But most of all, parents provide emotional support and encouragement, and are their child's best advocate.
Teachers represent role models beyond those provided by parents. They introduce added knowledge and differing points of view. Classroom routines and expectations are the first steps on the road to gaining and maintaining the ability to earn a living. Schools provide a learning environment where a child's skills can be measured against the abilities of age peers. Classroom teachers are trained to spot any learning problems and to work with counselors to provide any assistance a child may need for educational success.
The partnership between parents and teachers is not always an easy one to maintain, but it is essential to the educational process. Parents can take an active part by checking notes sent home by the teacher, talking to their child about school and attending school events. Teachers can send home positive communication about children, as well as notes about deficiencies or problems. Regular calls to parents can develop a communication bridge that is beneficial to the child.
The author is Teacher I at Lara Integrated School