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How To Help Your Child Succeed In School (& Avoid Report Card Surprises)

Father and young daughter high-fiving while completing homework.

Without the right tools for success, it can be hard for students to reach success on their own.

Academic success doesn’t come easily for every student. Frustration, stress, and worry about school performance can all lead to poor grades and prevent students from seeking help.

Fortunately, with a bit of planning and an understanding of how to manage challenges, helping your child improve his or her performance in school is achievable.

How To Improve Your Child’s Performance In School

Improving your child’s academic performance starts with having a plan for three important milestones during the school year:

  • The beginning of the school year
  • The first report card
  • Throughout the remainder of the year

Keep reading to discover tips for each milestone and how you can help your child succeed in school.

Build Good Habits At The Start Of The School Year

  1. Build A Homework Schedule
  2. Good grades start with good homework habits; having a well-planned routine is key to making sure good habits stick throughout the school year.

    Create an after-school schedule with your child that clearly outlines how much time should be spent doing homework, when the homework will be completed, and how much time is allowed for other activities.

    Setting a schedule lets your child know what is expected of him or her each day and how to effectively manage his or her time.

  3. Check In With Your Child Frequently
  4. Check in with your child each day after school to find out what he or she learned in class, what homework was assigned, and when projects or assignments are due.

    These check-ins will help you stay in the loop with your child’s learning and keep your child on track to complete what needs to be done.

    If your child can’t recall what was learned in class or what needs to be completed at home, it may be a sign of school stress or poor attention at school. Schedule a meeting with your child’s teacher to discuss in-class performance. Figuring out the problem early will help you make a plan to overcome barriers and prevent surprises when report cards roll around.

  5. Encourage Your Child To Do School Work (Even When Nothing Is Assigned)
  6. There may be times where your child’s teacher doesn’t assign homework, but it’s important to keep your child engaged after school every day.

    Whether it’s reviewing notes from class, reading a book, or completing practice questions from a textbook, there are always opportunities for further learning. Encouraging your child to complete work regardless if homework is assigned will help him or her maintain good after-school habits.

    Have Conversations About The First Report Card

  7. Have An Open Discussion With Your Child
  8. Report card time is a good opportunity to have a conversation with your child about how he or she is feeling. Talk about performance in school, the teacher’s comments, what subjects he or she is enjoying, and what areas he or she finds are challenging.

    Find positive things to talk about first, such as a good comment or progress being made Discuss poor grades or areas of concern, but avoid having your child feel that this conversation is a punishment.

    Instead, ask questions about why your child feels like he or she is struggling, or what he or she thinks happened to end up with lower grades. Validating your child’s struggles by acknowledging them is important for creating a plan to improve in the future.

  9. Attend Parent-Teacher Interviews
  10. Relying on your child’s perspective about how school is going doesn’t always give you a clear picture. Parent-teacher interviews are a chance to gauge how your child is doing in class, address report card concerns, and create a plan for improvement.

    Developing a relationship with your child’s teacher is important to keep open and frequent communication about your child’s progress.

  11. Offer Encouragement And Support
  12. Express your confidence in your child by letting him or her know that improvement is within his or her reach. Let your child know that he or she doesn’t have to tackle challenges alone and that you are available for support.

    When children know parents are willing to help them succeed, they are more likely to seek out support when they are struggling.

    Use Report Card Results To Plan For Success The Rest Of The School Year

  13. Encourage Your Child To Set Goals
  14. After reviewing the report card with your child, have him or her set clear, achievable, and measurable goals to work toward for the next report card. Focus on major areas of improvement, like the subjects he or she is struggling with most or certain skills that need to be developed.

    Encourage your child to start with smaller, incremental goals. Having smaller goals to achieve gives your child a roadmap to bigger end goals, like improved grades on the next report card.

    Some examples of goals include:
    – Study science for an extra 20 minutes per night
    – Contribute in class twice per day
    – Get a B+ or higher on the next math test

    Helping your child set goals teaches perseverance, builds confidence, and gives your child motivation to improve.

  15. >Readjust The Homework Plan
  16. If your child is struggling in certain subjects more than others, make sure he or she prioritizes homework for those subjects before others. Encourage your child to spend more time reviewing notes or studying for those subjects.

    If necessary, increase the amount of time spent on homework each night. Readjusting your child’s homework plan will help make sure he or she stays focused on the areas needing improvement.

    Ask your child’s teacher if there are opportunities for further learning in the areas where your child needs some extra help, such as worksheets, extra one-on-one learning time, or other materials.

  17. Seek Out Tutoring
  18. Some students need extra support to improve their school performance and reach their academic goals.

    If your child is struggling in certain subjects or feeling frustrated with learning, tutoring could be the answer. Tutoring can give your child the extra attention and support he or she needs. It’s also a great way to build school confidence in a low-pressure environment.


Help Your Child Improve The Next Report Card Results

Taking an active role in your child’s school progress is important for carving a path to success (and avoiding surprises on the next report card).

If your child is struggling in school, don’t wait for things to improve on their own—take action and help your child get the support he or she needs to succeed. Contact us today to discover how we can help your child reach success in the classroom and beyond.

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