Last newsletter, I gave some examples of routines to promote successful habits for all students, no matter the grade level. Anxiety in children is increasing every day, and I cannot help to wonder the reason. Do we put too much pressure on students? Is our focus on the wrong thing? Are we over-scheduling them? As you reflect on these questions, I give you the overarching big question: Have we taken the fun out of learning?
This year, you may have heard about some of the wonderful activities happening in our classrooms. You may also have heard about all of the wonderful small group activities your children do in their classrooms on a daily basis. This type of instruction is what truly enlightens the curiosity in learning. Instead of focusing on making an “A” on a test or making Honor Roll, focus on what your child is actually learning. Studying does not always have to be a strenuous activity. First and foremost, create a plan that will help with keeping a healthy balance between studying, homework and leisure. We strive to avoid student burnout at all cost. Here are some tips to make learning fun at home:
• Create a board game to play as a family to review for an upcoming test
• Turn Spelling Words into a song
• Ask your child math questions that pertain to everyday life: Tonight, our dinner requires 4 cups of rice. How many quarts is that?
We need to make Thanksgiving treat bags for your friends. If you want to make 10 bags with 5 pieces of candy each, how many pieces of candy do you need total? We have been working on being on time as a family. Why don’t we record the times we leave every morning and graph the amount of days we were on time this week. Were we on time most days this month? What percentage were we on time? Let’s celebrate with a family movie night! Come up with a Vocabulary dance to help remember those tough words or come up with an action that correlates with the word.
Create an anchor chart or visual as a family when discussing topics. Hang it in their room or in their homework space so they can refer to it at any time. Every child is uniquely and vastly different so finding the right balance can be difficult. This is where we can help. Be open to hearing ideas from your child’s teacher on Conference Days. You can help the most by being the primary educator of resilience. This growth mindset will help students long after they have left St. Augustine Catholic School. Not every grade is going to be an “A.” In Math terms: Lesson Learned > The Grade
I close with this letter from a Singapore Principal that went viral, and I continue to pray that all of our students find happiness in learning.
In His Spirit,
Denise P. Rios, Ph. Dc