Harnessing Active Parenting at School

Thong Lor – Feb 9, 2010     Numerous pedagogic research literature points to the fact that parental involvement in children’s education significantly improves academic performances. This is true for all levels of schooling – kindergarten, primary, secondary and even college/university.

Since parents are one of the few significant adults that children and teenagers look up to and try to impress, it is important for the former to be physically present and concretely demonstrate constant support and encouragement to the latter. Research indicate that parental involvement is a more important variable than socio-economic status of families when it comes to predicting academic and life-long success and social-emotional health.

Unlike the popular belief in the 1990s, that children and teenagers from lower SES background under-perform because they do not have enough resources, or lack early exposure and stimulation to academic materials; as well as having had limited opportunity to activate certain brain regions through the use of cutting-edge educational tools, people now realize that it doesn’t matter how much money and resources a child’s family has – what’s more important is how much and how well parents interact with and engage themselves in the child’s overall educational experiences (with whatever resources they have). All of us know at least one person who did not come from a high socio-economic background and yet did extremely well at school.

Ultimately, learning is not about the pocket money, books, desks and chairs, color pencils, computers, etc. In its most “primitive form”, learning takes place in social settings as a result of positive interactions between people, in the case of a school, between a teacher and students.

Wells International School realizes the importance of home-school ties and deliberately attempts to actively involve parents through various curricular and co-curricular activities.

This is demonstrated in the following activities that were organized in the months of January and February of 2010. The first event was a Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) meeting followed by a lunch gathering hosted by the Chairman of Wells International School himself. The second was a Morning Coffee Talk which was hosted by the School Counselor. In both events, parents were inspired and challenged to become more actively involved in their child(ren)’s education.

PTO meeting - Parent Relations Director, backed by Chairman of the School Board, sharing school's vision with parents
PTO meeting - Parent Relations Director, backed by Chairman of the School Board, sharing school's vision with parents
Parents contributing ideas to diversify ways to help their children at home and school
Parents contributing ideas to diversify ways to help their children at home and school
Lunch gathering - fellowship between school and home strengthened over a good meal
Lunch gathering - fellowship between school and home strengthened over a good meal
Counselor welcoming parents to the "Morning Coffee Talks" event
Counselor welcoming parents to the "Morning Coffee Talk" event
Encouraging turn out - parents show commitment to children's education by coming in early for the session
Encouraging turn out - parents show commitment to children's education by coming in early for the session
Filling in a survey indicating preference for parent workshops
Filling in a survey indicating preference of topics for parent workshops
Parents have the opportunity to network with other parents
Parents enjoy the opportunity to network with each other

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