Parenting Matters: Your child’s success

  • Wednesday, November 6, 2019 1:30am
  • Life

What you do today makes a difference in your child’s success in school tomorrow. That sounds rather strange when you think your child might still be in kindergarten or another early grade, but it really is true.

These early years of your child’s life are incredibly important in terms of setting the foundation for his success. When you lay the proper foundation, your child will have more success in school and you will feel more successful in your parenting.

Where to start

The proper foundation has two important parts. Part 1 is to read to him each and every day. You do not have to spend hours reading but spend at least 15 minutes. Make sure he sees the book you are reading from so he can connect words with pictures.

If he wants to pick out the book, that should be totally okay. Even if he wants to read the same book every day, that is fine. He must really like it.

He will even begin to know the order some of the words come in and say them before you say them. Let him hear you talking positively about his interest in reading when you talk to grandma. That will make him feel proud.

Brag about his reading interest to his father even when your child is in the room with you. It is fine for him to know how positively you feel about what he is doing.

Part 2 is to teach him to follow instructions. As with reading, you need to be the one who teaches him about following instructions. The first thing you need to do when you want him to do something is to pay attention to what you are saying. This is critical.

You also need to make sure that you maintain his attention. You will not have his attention if he is playing a video game or television is on.

When you speak, speak quietly. A soft voice may capture his attention better than a loud one. Give your child a few minutes to process what you have said so you can be sure it has sunk in. This gives you a chance to repeat what he may have missed.

Ask your child to tell you what you have asked him to do. This gives him a chance to clarify anything he misunderstood.

Do not ask him to do several things or he may get confused and not do any of them very well.

Kudos are key

We mentioned the importance of telling others of his reading success. It is also important to do something to acknowledge his skill at following instructions.

The most important one who needs to hear this is your child. Give him a hug when he is done. Tell him how proud you are of the good job he has done or how well he followed your instructions. He needs to hear when he does things right.

Both these main ways to teach your young child sound simple but they take a lot of effort from you. But remember, his success is worth it.

In addition to his success in school, doing these two things will also make him even more successful in life and more fun right now.

Cynthia Martin is the founder of the First Teacher program and former executive director of Parenting Matters Foundation, which publishes newsletters for parents, caregivers and grandparents. To reach First Teacher Executive Director Patty Waite, email patty@firstteacher.org or call 360-681-2250.

More in Life

PAFAC to fete longest day of year with Summertide Solstice Art Festival

The Port Angeles Fine Arts Center hosts Summertide Solstice Art Festival, a… Continue reading

TEASER
Dream Catcher balloon program named a top nonprofit

Pilot continues to seek opportunities to share flight with vets, more

tsr
Milestone: Soroptimists celebrate super show, auction

Representatives with Soroptimist International of Sequim are celebrating successes of their recent… Continue reading

Parenting in Focus: What your toddler needs

As your child grows you set limits, look for opportunities, and try… Continue reading

tsr
KSQM lines up a summer full of music

Jazz, bluegrass, folk, country and more are on the menu as KSQM… Continue reading

Eva Kozun and Gayle Selby hope the community keeps creating art for Free Little Art Galleries coming to the Sequim area this summer. Selby sent an article to Kozun in January that led the mixed-media artist to create four galleries with one posted so far at Dungeness’ Dandelion Botanical Company, 4681 Sequim Dungeness Way. Sequim Gazette photo by Matthew Nash
Dungeness business features area’s first Free Little Art Gallery

Sequim friends eye four more spots between Sequim and Port Angeles

OPAS presentation to examine lives of Greater Sage-Grouse

The Olympic Peninsula Audubon Society offers a free Zoom presentation on “Wildfire,… Continue reading

tsr
Olympic Medical Center adds staffers to orthopedic, sleep center teams

Olympic Medical Center last week announced the hiring of certified physician assistant… Continue reading

tsr
Milestone: Olympic Medical Center’s Johnson, Stamp earn leadership honors

Manager of Clinical Informatics Alberta Stamp, RN, and Manager of Information Services,… Continue reading

Most Read