With the second half of the school year quickly approaching, your child may be filled with excitement. They may talk about upcoming projects and discuss the things that they are learning. These children cannot wait to go back to school each day.

 

However, some children are filled with trepidation. School is seen as a source of frustration and disappointment. Some parents may mirror their child’s frustration and angst towards school.

 

This is understandable when parents receive failing report card after report card. Both parent and child feel helpless and unsure of what to do next. Many parents begin to feel as failures themselves.

 

Parents may try punishment, withholding privileges, bribery, and a whole assortment of techniques to get their child to improve in school. They may sit through countless meetings with teachers, the school principal, and guidance counselors. They may even try to tutor their child themselves.

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How do you know when it is time to seek additional help? Below is a list of questions compiled by Helene Goldnadel that you should ask yourself when deciding if additional academic help is necessary.

 

  • Has your child’s teacher recommended getting help?
  • Have your child’s grades started to fall regardless of the effort your child has made?
  • Have you found that your child works expeditiously on assignments, however, the final product is inaccurate and incomplete?
  • Has child’s confidence and motivation fallen?
  • Is your child losing interest in learning?
  • Does your child experience extreme test anxiety?
  • Is your child reluctant to go to school?
  • Is your child acting out in school?

 

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then your child may be in need of extra academic support.

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You should first begin by talking with your child’s teacher to see how you may assist at home. This may mean something as simple as turning off the television and putting away the video games for a while.

 

You may also need to foster an atmosphere of “academic excellence” in your home. As a family, instead of “Video Night”, have a Scrabble Night or Book Night. Instead of heading to the mall, take a trip to the public library and read a few good books.

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You should also try contacting a local tutoring center to see what kinds of programs they have available.

 

Be sure to have all of your child’s progress reports, report cards, and other supporting documents. If your child has any special requirements, be sure to share this with your child’s tutor.

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Finally, encourage your child! Celebrate incremental successes! Your child will look to you for motivation and encouragement. Be your child’s biggest cheerleader!