Being a single girl who’s hardly even babysat, I won’t pretend that I know much about parenting. However, here’s a list of what I’m seeing from the outside looking in.
5. Get your child a planner and check it every day. The primary reason students fail classes is because they don’t know what’s due and when (neither do they care because they don’t have any accountability for turning assignments in). Keeping a written schedule will be helpful to your child for the rest of his life, and it will aid you in the relationship. Instead of asking what your son did in school today, go over his planner with him. It’s a lot more difficult for him to say, “Nothing,” if his allowance/tv or computer privileges is attached to your knowledge of his classes. Also, you can say things like, “What’s Ender’s Game?” which narrows the conversation down for your kid and gives him something specific to talk about so that he doesn’t have to generate his own topic. It also keeps him from feeling quite so defensive because all he remembers about he day is how so-and-so got caught doing something naughty, but he certainly can’t tell you that.
4.Read. You son or daughter needs your help to believe that reading is valuable, “cool”, and worthwhile. You are the only person who can lay the foundation. Kids are forced into a peer group that is hostile to everything requiring effort and delayed gratification, both of which factor into reading… but if your child is 100% sure that you love and value reading, he or she will be forced to make a judgment call about books before the “too cool for school” classmates express their judgments.
3. Earn and require your son or daughter’s respect. The second you give up on this battle, your child will begin disrespecting every authority in his or her life. He or she will be rude to me, school administrators, and future bosses.
2. Your daughter needs you to spend money and time on her wardrobe. If you buy her classy clothes that also make her look and feel pretty, she will wear those and be happy. If you do not, she will borrow or steal the most scandalous mini-skirt in the history of the world, and she will sit unashamedly with her bra straps visible to the hormone-driven idiot who sits behind her. He won’t be able to think about anything other than her bra throughout the hour or so he’s in my class, and if he can get away with touching your daughter’s bra, he will.
1. Your child does not need a cell phone, and you certainly shouldn’t be texting your kid while he or she is at school. Kids don’t make good choices with their phones, even given a perfect example from you. However, your example of disrespect toward teachers and education will transfer to your offspring in a way that cripples him or her for life. If you text during your kid’s classes, you may as well type in: “You have permission to use your phone during English today and forever,” because that’s what your child takes away from every. single. text. he or she receives from you during my class.