Preparing for fall workshops in the community I was invited to a meeting to discuss what the school Counselors would like me to present in my Parenting and Teacher getting Intouch Workshops. In this meeting I learned many possibilities for supporting parents who are getting their little one’s off to school for the first time.
Sitting now at this end of the parenting years (17 and 19 years old) and looking back I remembered how lost my children and I where entering the first time. We didn’t know we were lost!
I would like to say the first time was kindergarten yet we discovered each year and each teacher is a first time experience. Sorry parents. There are the milestones of being in elementary, moving to middle school and then up to high school. Each time is a new experience.
Lets go back to kindergarten. Even after a few years of pre-school immersion and early child focused classes, school was a huge adjustment and learning curve for all of us. Besides being able to cut, color, draw, paint and create little projects children that are attending kindergarten are now expected to be able to:
- have letter recognition,
- write letters,
- know the beginning sounds,
- have reading readiness (awareness of words going from left to right)
- be attentive and follow directions
- have polite social skills
for description of each point – go to link
Wow! My mother was a stay at home mom and these learning goals she left to the teacher. This was before kindergarten and pre-school! Wanting to be better prepared myself I did have my children in a part-time pre-school and filled their time with other learning activities like early childhood music and many socialization opportunities. We also had a full schedule of our own activities and play learning. Yet, when it came to school, we lacked the preparedness level expected of them. I discovered that I had focused upon a different set of skills and apparently so did the pre-schools!
The first ugly thing to rear its head that became a huge distraction for us was behavior. Yes parents in kindergarten. A wake up call. As a fresh new mom with beautiful and innocent children this was a nightmare and the last thing I expected. We ran into bully kids, bully parents, bully teachers, bully secretaries, bully school principals. No discrimination here! Yet they all had one thing in common. Each one was trying the best way they knew how to get their needs met.
I want to support kids in the best way I know how and that is through supporting parents, teachers and schools in finding new ways of integrating behavior awareness, that with practice, makes life easier and more fulfilling. Therefore after the requests of the above mentioned meeting and to support my current classes I have begun this series of supportive tips.
My goal focus is to present material to parents that would include the educators needs yet still include the parents perspective. As I was hearing the needs expressed from the members of the school administration I was able to discriminate my parenting needs without judgement either way. Unique, yes and it will allow a rounded outlook that includes more equality.
Parents stay in touch and find concrete solutions for supporting your children through tips and fall workshops.