What Can Parents Do?
Ways To Support Your Child at Home and School
Praise your child daily for specific accomplishments. Try not make comments which are general statements such as " You are so smart." For more info on this, read book, " Nurture Shock"
Take your child to the library, to community activities, and to museums.
Set limits on TV-watching, and electronics. Be selective about what your child views.
Label the belongings your child takes to school
Review your child's work and items in their backpack each day.
Establish rules, routines and chores at home.
Create a special area for library books and school items.Teach your child to check this area as he or she leaves for school.
Keep your child healthy by taking him or her for regular checkups, keeping immunizations current, providing a balanced diet, and making sure he or she gets regular exercise.
Read to your child and encourage him or her to read to you. Be a reading role model by letting your child see you read.
Notify your child’s teacher of any medical concerns.
Keep your child at home if he or she has a fever, a rash, a sore throat, an earache, an active cold, or whenever you feel that things are not right with your child.
I came across, the following anonymous comment several years ago on a web discussion board. There are good reminders for all of us regarding being clear and consistent with our expectation and rules. Hope you find it helpful.
"Too many parents make the mistake of making idle threats. "If you don't clean up your room, you can't go to Ben's party this afternoon!" However, when party time comes, the messy room is still there, but there he goes to the party because it's "not fair to Ben to keep him home". However, it's less fair to your child, because you are giving him the message that he doesn't have to follow authority because nothing will happen to him anyway. Believe it or not, this sets the basis for teen-aged lawbreakers
Make rules that are fair but necessary for the safety and well-being of others in the environment. Repeat the rules often. Make sure the child understands what a rule means as well as what the consequences will be if he breaks it. Start when the child is very young with just one rule. Maybe it's that he has to eat all of his dinner before he plays or something. The only way to make a child a believer is to actually have consequences that affect his life in some way. Not allowing him to eat brussel sprouts for dinner tomorrow because he didn't eat his dinner today isn't going to affect most children.
When you get angry, take time to think before threatening to do something you really don't want to do. Stop and count to yourself. Go to the rule chart and discuss with the child exactly which rule his behavior is breaking and that that is why you were getting angry. The rules you decide on are the law. Never let him take control away from you. Don't feel guilty or back down because he's crying. Children will try every trick in the book to get you to relent. However, you're doing yourself a favor later on when you stick to your guns when the child is small. I don't believe in corporal punishment. I've seen it used with little lasting effect. However, the children I saw it used on were already 6 and 7 years old, and it's much harder to enforce rules on older children than it is the little ones. If you start being an authority figure in your child's eyes, you'll continue to be one as long as you yourself enforce the rules you've established. Break them, and you lose credibility.
You have to learn early that you can NOT be your child's friend. That is not your job. He will have friends. Your job is to be his parent, to teach him acceptable behavior so that he'll have a lot of friends his own age. Misbehavior is NEVER cute, no matter how young the child is. Actually, it's often a test of you, so make sure you pass the test. You can enjoy your children, but just don't let them get the upper hand. One mother once told me that she just couldn't make her 3-year-old stay in a seatbelt. I always wondered what happened when he got to be a teenager. If she couldn't handle him when he was small, she'd never stand a chance with a teen."