Passionate About the San Francisco-area
and the Moms Who Live Here

Use Summer to Shift Your Family’s Mindset on Homework and Academics

*This post is sponsored, but the thoughts and feelings are our own, and we only work with businesses who we believe to be reputable and resourceful to our readers. 

Parenting is not for the weary.  Raising kids from little hatchlings to young adults able to spread their wings and fly confidently out of our nest is not a job for the faint-hearted. Parenting is a job for only the strongest, the most level-headed, the ones who can think fastest on their feet, only those with a backbone of steel.  

Uh oh.

Wait, what??

I think I just lost my job.  If those are the job requirements of being a good parent, I guess I’m unemployed.

Thank goodness these attributes are not what parenting truly requires.  Sometimes it feels like it is, like we should have gone through boot camp and become a Master Sergeant before we were qualified enough to guide our little humans safely and successfully through life. Sometimes it feels like we should have gotten the highest degrees possible in Psychology, Medicine, Sociology, and Criminal Justice before procreating, but most of us haven’t, and most of us won’t. Yet, we are still allowed to be parents.

So, what are the qualifications of a great parent? Immediately we hear all parents answer – 

“Love.” Agree.

“Safety.” Affirmative.

“Food and shelter.” Yes.

“Homework help.” Essential. Um, for real?

Are we saying that to be great parents we have to sit and help our kids with their homework night after night, to struggle with them through studying for tests in subjects that we really don’t understand or, let’s be honest, care to understand?

No. There are plenty of “great” parents that don’t sit with their children to do these things because it’s not in their wheelhouse. Directly helping kids academically is not every adult’s best gift, and that’s okay! It doesn’t make us rotten parents if we don’t suffer through Algebra with them every night for three hours.

What matters is that we are academic parents:  parents who seek a path for our children that provide the essential needs that our children’s academic excellence and growth require. We may not be the person who can help with molecular chemistry or trigonometry, but we make sure we find someone who can. We may work nights and can’t be there to check answers or quality of homework, but it can be a family policy that breakfast time is for going over homework before it goes in the backpack. It may not work in a family dynamic to do homework right after school because of sports, obligations, or even personality and learning preference, but a family policy can be that quiet thinking time is from 7:00 to 8:30 P.M. every school night.

Here are some essential questions academic parents should ask to begin to evaluate their best practices for their children’s learning success:

  1. Have we created an environment at home that gives adequate space and time for learning?
  2. Have we provided opportunity, support, encouragement and emotional permission for our child to strive for higher than the basic requirements on assignments?
  3. Are our at-home academic practices supporting higher level/global thinking as much as/more than getting the grades?
  4. Have we researched our child’s learning style and preference to be sure they are receiving content in a way that they will retain?
  5. Is our family supportive of academics emotionally and physically more than other activities that have less impact on our children’s futures?

There are a hundred more questions we can ask ourselves as parents, some of which will send us spinning in chaos and worry, but the questions above are ones in which the answers, once determined and solidified, will make life in our homes easier and more conducive to success.

Studies have shown that academics is high on the list of stresses for the parent/child relationship. Taking time to be a strong academic parent will not only raise our children’s grades, it will raise the bar that they strive for both academically and as higher level thinkers on our planet.  

Isn’t that what we hope for when they leave our nest? That they will make an impact and be world changers? Academic parenting is key to this impact in our world. Our kids are ready!

Summer is the perfect time to shift the direction in which your children view academics in your home. Away from the rigor and stresses of homework, teacher expectations, deadlines, and peer influences, your student can experience a shift in viewpoint, specifically extracted from the modeling of his or her parents.  When you model that your kid is powerful, intelligent, and capable of greatness, your child will receive that vibe from you, the person he or she is most using to evaluating his or her value, and will adopt it.

Spend time this summer connecting academically with your child. At Victory Garden Kids, we offer two ways to connect with your child.  First, our Stay Connected/Get Connected program offers in-person or Skype tutoring for your child to help him or her eliminate summer loss and  “stay connected” with content from his/her previous school year, while “getting connected” to anticipated content that will be experienced in the next grade for your child.

Second, we offer Skype sessions and resources to help you, as the parent,  offer success in your home academically. More than just tutoring your child in the summer with our Stay Connected/ Get Connected program, we will simultaneously meet with you, as the leadership in your home, to give resources that will uplift and strengthen your child’s belief in their own academic power.  We will evaluate how homework time is addressed and valued, how you respond to the differences in learning styles between your child and yourself, and offer resources to ensure your home is an active learning center.

Children who feel academically strong will present themselves and believe in themselves to be victorious leaders in society. They will not be followers in their own journeys’ they will become the students that are setting the standards of excellence and are leading the way for their peers, all because they know they are intelligent and can conquer any obstacle that is in their way.  You are a stepping stone for that mind frame, and we are here to support that transformation. 

Join us for an introductory Getting to Know You Session via Skype! Email us or call now. The last day of school is upon us, and it’s the perfect opportunity for transformation in your home to over the top success and excellence!

*****

Jennifer is wife to Jeff, her soulmate, and mommy to her two children, Ben, the rock star hockey monkey and incoming senior home school student (age 17), and Hannah (age 20), third-year UCLA student, majoring in American Literature (be still her mama’s literature lovin’ heart).  Jennifer has been a teacher for 20 years, spanning all grades K-12.  She has her Master’s degree in Secondary Education and is CEO of Victory Garden Kids.  She is a college advisor and tutor for students that she adores.  Jennifer’s heart fuels her to be an advocate for children and parents and feels this relationship is the key to raising victorious kids that are going to rule the planet!  Jennifer enjoys getting mani/pedis with her daughter, watching her son shred on his snowboard, and exploring new cities with her husband. You can check out services that VGK offers at www.victorygardenkids.com or email [email protected]

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