Love for Learning Begins at Home

February 25, 2009

After listening to President Obama's speech last night, I was enthused to write this post. This not a politically motivated post. I just want to applaud the fact that he stressed the importance of home in learning and the competitive edge that America can achieve by focusing on education. These are his words.

The responsibility for education begins at home.

A good education is no longer a pathway to opportunity. It is a prerequisite.
These are powerful words because they highlight the significance of the home environment and how it affects a child's perception of learning.

How many of you believe that education is the key to success?
I'm not going into what constitutes success because that's a whole different topic, maybe for another post. I think that we can all agree that education is very important. Yes, there are success stories of people that didn't go to college but those are the exceptions not the rule. As to whether schools provide quality education, here's an interesting take on what schools are.

As a parent, I believe, schools are a place of learning but they are not the only place where learning takes place. Learning begins at home. Good home environments can foster a love for school by providing a place free of distractions and through the role modeling of good reading and writing habits that children can pick up on.

Families may be in situations where they may not be able to devote much of their time and energy on their child's academic enrichment. But, as a community we can step up and try to fill that gap and as parents we can provide encouragement and support. Here are some ways in which we can offer assistance:

As a Community


Volunteer at a local school
Helping out by copying class materials, reading to kids,and assisting with classroom activities, can provide much needed time for teachers to prepare for curriculum
related work, thereby enriching the students' educational experience.

Become a mentor

Mentoring takes only a few hours every week but it can be so rewarding. There are so many disadvantaged kids that just need someone to talk to,someone to guide them, someone to whom they can express their fears. Talking to an adult who cares can make a huge difference in the choices that they make at school or outside of school.

Provide tutoring services

Use your special skills and expertise in your subject matter to tutor struggling students. Some students just need that one-on-one instruction to help them perform better

Use your voice

Participate in School Board meetings. Express your opinion if you think any new legislation or policies may affect children and their education adversely.

As a parent/Caregiver

Be an integral part of your child's life

I don't mean be in their face all the time, but know where they're going, who they're texting, and who their friends are. Since friends are a major influence in a person's life, make sure you're children choose their friends wisely.

Be Approachable
Let your children know that they can come to you and share whatever it may be that's bothering them, irrespective of the enormity of their mistake.

Communicate

Talk to your children's teachers, ask questions, and show them you are involved in your child's education. At the secondary school levels, a lot of teachers may resent this but show them you are doing it with the best interests of your child and not questioning the teachers' ability or judgement
and they will happy to keep you in the loop.

Imparting a love of learning may be the best gift that we can give our children. In what other ways can we forge their enthusiasm for learning?

{photo credit: books by Hashmil}

In three words, I can sum up everything I've learned about life. It goes on.
-Robert Frost

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