Positive Parenting Newsfeed—a Child Trends Project—is Supported by the National Science Foundation

Parent Engagement = Kids Succeeding

ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Most of us know that being involved in your child’s learning is critical. But what should you be doing and where should those activities take place? Here are more details on some ways in which parents can support their child’s school success.

Studies show that early exposure to books and talking about stories at home at a young age allows kids to have bigger vocabularies in kindergarten and first grade, and higher reading skills by third grade. But research suggests parental involvement should not end at story time.

Psychologists looked at almost 100 research studies on the impact of family involvement on education for kids ages three to eight. They found parents from diverse backgrounds, when given direction—like how to do math activities at home that correspond with the math skills the kids are learning at school—can increase their children’s math skills more than students whose parents have had little or no support.

Researchers also say two-way communication between parents and the school is important. Attend at least one parent-teacher conference during a school year. Teachers and school staff should communicate regularly by email, telephone, letters, and newsletters. Families with language barriers should have access to translation services.

Researchers found that kids were 3.5 times more likely to graduate from high school when positive mother-child interaction was recorded in kindergarten. Experts say when reading a book, ask simple questions like “who,” “what,” “where,” “when,” and “why?”

Contributors to this news report include: Cyndy McGrath, Supervising; Milvionne Chery, Producer; Roque Correa, Editor.

Produced by Child Trends News Service in partnership with Ivanhoe Broadcast News and funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. 

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