Throughout the years, Title I parents have found many ways to motivate and guide their children. The job of being a parent can be demanding and any helpful advice is usually appreciated. Most parents are more than eager to share policies and practices that they have found useful in helping their child succeed in school. The following are ideas that parents have passed on for the benefit of others because they believe in the power of "What Works for Us".
Sonia-Spring Lake Elementary
Completing homework is highly valued in her household. The three children-a kindergarten girl and twin fourth grade boys-study every night. Sonia works on language skills with her daughter. She shows her flash cards with words, instead of numbers, to help build vocabulary. Then she will read to her, stopping at words seen on the flash cards. Her daughter has to read those works on her own.
The boys reinforce math skills in the kitchen. Sonia takes the measurements in her cooking and uses them in mathematics problems. The twins also use educational Web sites given to Sonia by the school's teachers. Both boys get two books from school on a regular basis. One is read independently while the more challengng book is read together with Sonia.
Sonia also volunteers at Spring Lake. She helps tutor kindergarteners, host Principal Coffees, and works on a committee to get other parents involved in parent/teacher/school activities.
Rebecca-Spring Lake Elementary
This parent visits the Parent Resource Center at Spring Lake often. She checks out games, flash cards, and books-in English and Spanish-for her first and second grade girls. She also attends many school functions. For example, Parent Math Night provided her with materials (cards, dice, games relating to time and money) and advice to play educational games at home with her children.
She and the girls frequent libraries at the school and in the nieghborhood. They read nightly. She asks questions about the book based on the cover. This skill was taught at a Parent Reading Night. Her school's Web site is also a useful source of informaiton and activities,
Rebecca has had children attending Spring Lake for thirteen years. She started out volunteering and is now a math paraprofessional.
Maria-Sts. Peter and Paul
"The learning materials we use the most at home are a small and inexpensive computer, a tape recorder, a chalk board and books. We and our sons use the computer to practice math and spelling. We read aloud a lot and make tapes so we can check to see if we are reading with expression. My husband and my son use the chalk board to practice writing spelling words and we all read a lot. We try to spend no more than an hour a day watching television. Playing video games is a weekend activity only."