Achieve School Success by setting Your Academic Resolutions
Academic pledges can be a nice thing for many school-aged kids. Academic resolutions are aimed at dealing with areas that need improvement in the new school year (just like other New Year pledges). And just like those other resolutions, the sooner you start, the better.
Here are some tips for parents and families how to start the new school year in Dubai and elsewhere successfully:
Work as a family
Set the goals together and encourage your child to involve a trusted teacher or friend, but keep in mind that the goals are ultimately his/hers. Discuss general goals such a better algebra grade, improved study habits, making sports editor for the school paper, and help him/her determine the priorities. Just remember to let him/her make the ultimate decisions. Determining his/her own goals will boost his/her motivation and self-sufficiency.
Set simple goals
Let the goals be simple, clear, and easy to understand. Young children will benefit most from short-term goals, because they are, well, short and lead to higher rates of achievement. Daily goals are the most appropriate – “What shall we do today in the park?” “What book shall we check out of the library?” Older students in late elementary and middle school can start setting longer-term goals and more detailed academic resolutions since this teaches them the useful skill of planning.
Start by establishing helpful routines. You should give your children the consistency of fairly regular routines while weekends and holidays can be breaks. Bedtime, wake-up, study, homework, play, family time–children rely on these routines. Moreover, the structure helps them to feel safe, to know what’s expected of them, and to achieve success.
You should help them organize. Organized students have better school performance. Just help them to determine their goals (no matter written or electronic), to keep their notebooks and backpacks neat and orderly, to break up large tasks into smaller ones so they don’t seem too difficult, to maintain a work space at home that’s actually workable and not a disaster area, and to stick to the goals you’ve set together.
You should also establish healthy habits. Healthy students are better in learning. Help your children by monitoring their screen-time (TV, video games, cell phones, etc.) and make sure they’re getting enough sleep. You should also insist on maintaining their good eating habits and make sure they’re involved in regular and aerobic exercise, and stick to those goals and routines you’ve set.
Turn yourself into a Role Model
You should also never forget to be a good role model. Children usually learn from their parents. They will learn some pretty useful life lessons if they see that you’re organized, focused on what’s important to you and your family, staying healthy, and being true to your values. You should always be positive and diligent because they’ll test your patience often. When you or your family make a mistake, start over with renewed determination. That is a pretty valuable lesson in itself.
Don’t give up!
Giving up is not an option. Academic resolutions are just as significant as social or personal ones – maybe even more. Show your children that you’re absolutely serious about these resolutions and that their school success is as crucial to you as it is to them.
Ask for Help
You should get help early if you need it. If your children are having trouble despite your best efforts, don’t hesitate to ask for help. Use the professional advice of a teacher or guidance counselor. You can also get additional support at a learning center. Another option is to find a “study buddy” for your child. Just get help now, before the little problem grows into a major one.
May the academic New Year be successful for both you and your child!