Instilling a Love for Learning
"By wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; and by knowledgethe rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches."
Study your Children:
Be a student of your own children. Learn what they love, what they dislike, what their interests are, and what they like to do. When we learn everything about our children, the easier it will be to help them grow in knowledge.
What They Love:
Take what they love and grow on that. Provide books of their interest. Research it. Let them be physically involved in it. Let them know that because it interests them, you are interested, also. Provide opportunities for their area of interests to grow.
Provide Learning Opportunities:
My boys love dirt biking. This actually may be an understatement! But, because they love dirt biking we provide learning opportunities. We provide books and magazines to strengthen their reading abilities. Dad teaches them how the bike works. He shows them how to change the tire and more. They research all they can about what makes a bike work and function well. They study how to make it ride better and faster. You can take this idea and use it for any area of interest. Whatever they love to do, use it as an opportunity to help them learn more.
Provide magazines, newspaper, books, and other materials. If a child is not sure what interests them, let them find out by providing every resource available.
Read, Read, Read:
A child can never have enough books! It will never harm a child to read to him too much! Well, there is no such thing as "too much." Reading to children helps with their imaginations and creative thinking. A child is also never too young or too old to be read to. I start reading to my children in the womb! They can hear your voice by mid-pregnancy. And they respond to your voice when they are born. Even before the age of one, they respond to certain books. I had one son who has a favorite book,"Bunny's Hungry". It used repetition, and he loved for me to read it to him even up into the toddler and early elemntary years. Reading should be one of the most important thing you do with your child. Toddlers need to be read to often. Do not use TV as a means of entertainment. Read to them. As they grow older they will be more apt to open a book than turn on a tv for entertainment. Even when my children are old enough to read by themselves, I still read to them. I love to read devotions and the simple classics to them. I remember reading Tom Sawyer, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and many more. And for the even older ones, I still like to read with them. I encourage them to read on their own every day. It is a priority to have at least 30 minutes or more reading time before bed. They read the Bible, study their Bible verse, and read one chapter(or more) of a chapter book. It is required of them to have their chores done, homework done, exercise (like playing outside), and reading time before they have tv or computer time. They will usually find they don't have time for tv. Or they are more interested in reading their book.
We read a Proverb from them Bible every day, also. After dinner we sit down and read that days Proverbs. There are 31 Proverbs, like the days of the month. We read two or more if we have to keep up. Repeated reading helps them memorize the proverb. And they always get something new out of it every time!
Instill a desire to Learn:
One of the best movies that conveys this message is "Stand and Deliver." Children need to be encouraged to learn. They do not need principals or teachers who act like they don't care. They need their teachers to provide a safe, happy learning environment. If you think your child is not in a positive learning environment have a conference with the principal. Or talk to your husband about the options for your family. As a parent you have the right to give the best learning opportunities to your child that you can! They are only young once.
I read a book by Ron Clark, "The Essential 55." It was one of the best book about learning I have ever read! I highly recommend this book to all teachers and parents. There is so much positive information in this book, I don't have enough room to express all that I love about it!
No Negative Speech about Teachers:
When your child hears you speak badly about teachers, then they think they do not have to respect them. All teachers deserve respect. Even if we do not agree with a teacher in any way, we should not let our children hear us talk badly or say inappropriate things. If we have a problem with a teacher, my husband and I will talk about it to each other only. We make sure the child cannot hear what we are discussing. Then, we have a conference with the teacher or principal. If we give a child a negative view of his teachers, then they will have a negative view of learning.
If a teacher is inappropriate with your child~ If you feel like a teacher has done your child wrong, you may speak to your child about the morals and values that you stand behind as a family. By all means, please stand up for your child. Do not let a teacher degrade or belittle your child. Your child should always feel like you have their best interests at heart.
Your Child's Brain:
0-4 years old ~ Logical thinking- This is the age where they are learning logical thinking. Encourage this type of learning. Reading, puzzles, play-doh, arts & crafts, coloring, cutting, pasting,etc...
0-10 years old~ Language- This is the age that is best for learning language. If you want your child to have a broad vocabulary, instill a desire during this age. That is why it is so important to teach them to love reading at an early age.
3-10 years old~ Musical- This is the best age to introduce music. The younger the better. But, remember, they do not all have to start by the age of three.
Care about School:
Take an interest in what they are involved in at school. I check their homework every afternoon and night. I go over school work with them. I help them learn to be responsible with the school work, to be organized. If I see they are struggling in an area, I help them. If I am not able to help, then I get help from other resources. Let them know that it is okay to ask for help. Providing help for them to improve when needed builds their self-esteem. I ask about their day. I help them study, if it's needed.
Go to meetings, clubs, and be involved in the PTA. I am a room mom to at least one of my son's classes a year. I like to help the teachers, be there for parties, and be there for needed help. Just my presence in the classroom is appreciated by my son. It makes them feel good that I want to be there for them, and be a part of their school life.