toll
free
(877) 687-7200
Forgot password?
Username: Password:

Posts Tagged ‘learning at home’

Motivating Your Child

Wednesday, March 20th, 2013

Sometimes a child doesn’t seem motivated to start a project because it appears overwhelming. You can help by teaching your child to break a large job down into smaller parts. Say, “First, we will plan a trip to the library to get the materials you will need. Then you will need to schedule some time each day for your research.”

As your child completes each step, he will gain confidence and motivation. That will keep him working until the job is finished.

The Trick of Nines

Sunday, March 17th, 2013

Is your child having trouble learning the “9″ times table? Here is a trick to help. Multiply any number by 9, and the answer will always add up to 9. Try it. 2 time 9 equals 18, and 1 plus 8 equals 9. 8 time 9 equals 72, and 7 plus 2 equals 9.

The trick works for very large numbers, as well, like this 8142 times 9 equals 73,278. 7 plus 3 plus 2 plus 7 plus 8 equals 27…and 2 plus 7 equals 9.

Give your child a calculator and let her try it for herself.

Eight Ways to Help Your Child Assume Responsibility for Learning

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

How can you help your child build a “take-charge” attitude and assume more responsibility for learning? Read and discuss these self-management strategies together:

1. Set Goals

Help your child learn to set goals and work to achieve them. Let your child know that successful people set goals. To succeed goals should be:

  • Short-term – do-able in a brief period of time
  • Specific – “75% on the weekly math test” or “completing a research report on schedule” are clearly defined goals. You will both know when a specific goal has been met.
  • Realistic – set only slightly above current level of achievement so that improvement can be recognized frequently.
  • Planned – to include the when, where, why, how, and how long of meeting the goal successfully.

2. Be an example

Give examples of goals you have set and met. Tell results and benefits of meeting goals. Let your child know that you feel good about what you achieved.

Discuss stories about people in the news who have set and met goals so that your child sees the value of taking responsibility for achievement

3. Introduce checklists

Checklists build responsibility and provide the sense of achievement that comes from checking completed items off a list.

4. Encourage a positive approach

A “can’t do” approach weakens a child’s will to “take-charge” of learning.

5. Understand instructions

Your child can’t gain a sense of responsibility, work independently, and “take-charge” in learning situations without understanding directions and instructions. Help your child know what to do with everyday instruction words by explaining, using, and reviewing the key words and phrases of instruction, such as:

circle P cross out P underline P delete P omit P graph
compare/contrast P explain P outline

6. Ask questions

When students sense that they need to know more about a topic, their motivation increases and they want to take responsibility for more learning.

7. Give praise

Praise used effectively can increase your child’s motivation and build a sense of responsibility for learning.

Praise for successful or improved performance, not just working on a task. Wait until you see that enough effort has been put forth, or enough work accomplished, so that praise is truly deserved.

8. Build on success

Once your child’s skills are beginning to expand and you see a “take-charge” attitude toward learning, you can help build on this success.

  • Give opportunities to practice skills informally
  • Encourage interests, activities, and hobbies that provide practice in learning
  • Give increased responsibility

Six Ways to Help With Learning

Friday, March 1st, 2013

You can help your child succeed in learning by building his or her self-confidence at home. Use these guidelines:

  • Respect your child by treating him or her with the dignity you would a friend.
  • Have faith in your child. Don’t be afraid to give your child increasing responsibility and independence.
  • Concentrate on the positive; avoid using discouraging words or actions.
  • Recognize your child’s efforts, not just his or her accomplishments.
  • Build self-esteem and feelings of adequacy by using positive phrases such as…
“I can tell you worked very hard on that.”
“You are getting much better at that.”
“I appreciate what you did.”
“You really handled that situation well.”
  • Discourage competition (in all forms) between brothers and sisters.

And, remember, don’t feel guilty if you “blow it”, but use your energy to try again more effectively.


    Reading At Home

    Sunday, February 24th, 2013

    Learning to read is much like learning any other skill. It requires a combination of instruction, experimentation, and practice. But the first step must be motivation. The child must want to learn to read. Parents can encourage their children to read  by demonstrating that they think reading  is important. Parents can help their children discover the benefits of reading:  new ideas…relaxation…adventure…fun.

    Buy as many children’s books as you can afford.
    • Give books as gifts.
    • Visit the library regularly.
    • Allow your children to choose their own books.   Don’t rush them.
    • Show your children that you enjoy reading. Make sure they see you reading newspapers, magazines, and books.
    • Set up a special place for reading.
    • Encourage older children to read to younger children.
    • Surround your child with words; point out street signs; label objects in the house such as table, desk, and stove.
    • Play word games like Scrabble, Anagrams, and Ad Lib.
    • Watch educational TV programs together. Some stress reading development.
    • Read to your child, especially at bedtime. Reread favorite stories.
    • Ask you child to read to you.
    • Stress the things your children do well in reading rather than any mistakes they make. Remember:  Success breeds success.

    Happy Valentines Day!

    Thursday, February 14th, 2013
    I took a piece of plastic clay
    And idly fashioned it one day,
    And as my fingers pressed it, still
    It moved and yielded to my will.

    I came again when days were past;
    The bit of clay was hard at last,
    The form I gave it still it bore,
    But I could change that form no more!
    I took a piece of living clay,
    And gently pressed it day by day,
    And molded with my power and art
    A young child’s soft and yielding heart.

    Anon.

    A Family Pledge

    Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

    We will sit down as a family for some of our meals.

    We will build a family library, including some of our children’s favorite books.

    We will make family visits to libraries, museums, zoos, and other learning places. We will talk about what we see.

    We will set aside enough time to finish the day’s homework assignments.

    We will have family “study” time when parents read and children do their homework.

    We will balance our time between reading or other creative activities and watching TV.

    We will all share in the excitement and joy of learning.

    We will take time to visit with one another and to show our love and appreciation for each other and for our family.

    Choosing Books for Your Children

    Friday, January 18th, 2013

    One of the best ways to encourage children’s reading is to give them books of their very own. With so many children’s books in print, however, making the best selections may seem like a formidable task.

    Since all children should have books they can handle freely, durability is important, says the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Educational Research and Improvement. Pick well-constructed board books for infants and toddlers, so they can help turn pages without damage. Consider paperbacks and plastic covers for older kids who are not quite ready for expensive hardbacks.

    Next, let your children’s interests guide your selections, suggests the Department of Education. When children ask you endless questions about where they came from or why the sky is blue, chances are good there is a book with answers they can understand. If a child expresses an interest in cars, sports, computers or dinosaurs, find books on those topics. If you will be reading aloud together, remember to choose books you can enjoy too.

    Quality is as important to children as it is to adults, according to the Library of congress Children’s Literature Center. Well-written fiction with a satisfying plot and strong characterization will motivate your children to keep reading. Good illustration and design are essential to picture-story books. Critical to non-fiction are accuracy, organization and clarity of presentation.

    Also keep in mind your children’s reading ability. Books should be challenging enough to stimulate their thinking skills but not so difficult as to overwhelm them. The Department of Education suggests school-sponsored book fairs as an excellent source of offerings geared to your children’s ages and reading levels.

    Is cost a factor in your selection? Many second-hand bookstores offer very reasonable prices. Some even allow you to bring in books your children have outgrown and trade them for others. Many public libraries also have periodic used-book sales. Ask a librarian for dates and details.

    If you are still not sure what is appropriate, take advantage of available help. Teachers and children’s librarians can suggest books that are good for reading aloud and books of interest to a particular age group. Most libraries have book lists and journals that regularly review and recommend children’s books.

    Quality of Time

    Monday, January 14th, 2013


    Busy parents……especially those who are working or are single working parents…..have a limited amount of time to spend with their children. Spending time with your child, no matter what the age, is extremely important, but research suggests it is the quality of the time spent, not the quantity of time that is important.

    The quality of the time you spend together can be enhanced by talking with and listening to your child. Communicating with your child encourages him or her to express ideas, improve vocabulary and develop thinking skills……all of which are important for success in school.

    Quality time can occur at any time or any place. Driving in the car or riding in the bus, taking a walk in the park or a stroll through the neighborhood or going for an ice cream after dinner are all good opportunities for talking together. Cleaning the kitchen, doing the laundry, or washing the dishes together provide time to communicate with each other and keep in touch with each other’s activities. Children of all ages especially enjoy having your full attention at bedtime when you can read or talk together.

    Learning

    Friday, January 11th, 2013

    In an educational sense learning and behavior are inseparable.  Learning is said to have occurred when there is an observable change of behavior.  All learning results from exposure to stimulation.

    The source of stimulation is referred to as the stimulus. For the newborn all stimuli are unique in that they have not yet been meaningfully associated with a personal response mode.

    With the passage of time the child begins to associate specific stimuli with specific personal reactions. By way of example a child may relieve personal discomfort by moving the head away from an intensely bright light. Conversely the child may associate auditory sound patterns made by an adult with the satisfaction of his need for food.

    Through continual exposure to stimulation, the child begins to accumulate a pool of stimulus bound information. In this way he is ultimately able to predict his personal reaction to any stimulus which he has previously experienced in some meaningful way.

    A stimulus is not sufficient unto itself. A stimulus must be sensed or received if it is to have instructional value. Some sensory organ on the body must be able to detect the stimulus. Having a stimulus and the process of receiving it cannot complete a learning sequence. The received stimulus must be processed by the brain to cause some form of expression. The final part of the learning model which must be considered is what actually happens as a result of having detected a stimulus, or the terminal behavior. By combining all of these elements the basic learning model, in its simplest form, looks like this:

    Stimulus —» Reception —| Processing |—» Terminal Behavior (Expression)

    The learning model graphically represents a chain type of reaction commencing with receptive skills, proceeding to process skills and concluding with some form of expressive activity.