The start of a new school year is super exiting for students and staff!
When I was a little girl, I couldn’t wait for the night before the first day of school. My mom had a strict routine for the nine children in our family. Right after dinner time, she would bring out all the school supplies and set them in the middle of our kitchen table. The oldest sibling would start first with picking out the supplies he needed. Then the second sibling went and so on. I was the 7th child out of 9 so I had to wait quite a while for my turn. I loved picking out my supplies from the pile on the table. Even after all these years, I still love picking out new school supplies and I have a hard time falling asleep the night before the first day of school.
Fieldstone Elementary welcomed 660 fresh faced and eager students on our opening day. Parents often ask our teachers what they can do to help their children be successful. Teachers will often share the main activity a parent should do is read, read and read with their children. This is very good but my number one recommendation to parents might surprise you.
It’s not easy for me to say it but here it goes; turn off your TV and electronic games. Ok, I realize this is not easy to do. It sounds radical. Keep reading on and don’t go to a mental commercial break right now.
There are numerous studies over the past decade on the number of hours a day children have “screen time” (including iPad, computer, X-Box ect.). Research demonstrates that Americans participate in more “screen activities” than being engaged in educational endeavors. Changing habits is not easy, so start small. Start with having no screen time before school or no screen time after school Monday through Thursday. I think these small changes can have long lasting positive affects!
The other activities to make my top 5 list include reading with your children, practicing math facts and problems, getting the children to bed by 8:00 p.m. and communicating with your children’s teachers. Your children’s teachers can share with you very specific information and ideas unique to your child.
Each new school year is full of excitement, hope and potential for academic success. When teachers and parents partner together, the children will definitely benefit.
Good luck with limiting screen time. Let us know how you are doing! It’s not easy, but the results are absolutely worth it!