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Topic Archives: Parental Involvement

Do Parents Really Need a United Front?

March 23, 2017

Nancy Weinstein offers a mother’s contrarian view, admittedly developed out of desperation A common theme in child psychology is the importance of presenting children with a united front when it comes to rules, discipline and behavior. If Dad says it, Mom needs to back him up. And vice versa. Otherwise, as the psychological research tells us, children will feel confused and conflicted rather than getting the clear structure and reliable rules they need to feel safe and secure. According to Laurence Steinberg, Ph.D., author of The Ten Basic Principles of Good Parenting, “My advice is that if your child is not yet eleven or so, you and your spouse should do what you can to present a united front. It will make life… Read More

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2017: The Year to Bite the Magic Bullet

January 5, 2017

By Nancy Weinstein We remain optimistic that technology has the promise to transform education. Yet we start 2017 with a sobering reminder that technology’s impact has been slow and inconsistent. In every community, students are still struggling or disengaged, parents are anxious, and teachers are stressed. So what do we do next? Keep trying new solutions? Give it another year? We say it’s time to accept that technology is not the magic bullet that will save our educational system. We know technology can help make learning and teaching easier and more enjoyable. But only if we first embrace the three human elements essential to effective learning. Students will need to work hard to learn. There is no solution, technology or otherwise, that will change that. There’s no… Read More

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5 Simple Messages to Make Kids Listen

December 14, 2016

  Consistency matters. If we want our kids to learn, parents and teachers need to be delivering the same consistent message at home and at school. Why so important? Elementary school kids literally hear every word you say. And they generally want to please. But if they get conflicting messages, they can’t please everyone. And they might stop trying. By middle school, we need to face the reality that tweens and teens don’t hear a lot of what adults say. It becomes even more essential to deliver a consistent message so that when they tune in, the message sticks. 5 Simple Messages That Work With Every Kid What Do You Think? All too often, adults tell but forget to ask and listen. It’s amazing what kids will… Read More

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It Takes A Village

September 27, 2016

Guest Blog by Jen Cort When kids are little, parents know they need trusted adults for events such as picking them up from school in case of emergency or hosting them on playdates. What we may not realize is that trusted adults are perhaps even more important in middle and high schools than in elementary school. Trusted adults are those adults you feel comfortable allowing your child to be in the care of and/or providing advice to your child in your absence. As your child grows, her/his needs also change. Therefore, it’s necessary to reevaluate the trusted adults in your child’s life on an ongoing basis. For example, social identifiers (such as race, gender and religion) may move into or out of… Read More

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It’s All in the Details: A Strengths-Based Approach to Growth Mindset

September 14, 2016

By Nancy Weinstein I’m a big fan of Stanford professor Carol Dweck’s Growth Mindset. It’s hard not to be. It’s evidence-based research that, in its most basic form, tells us that if a student tries hard and believes he can do it, i.e. has a growth mindset, he will succeed if he keeps at it. Conversely, if he has a fixed mindset, i.e. believes he was genetically preordained to succeed (or not), chances are that no matter what his gifts and talents, over time he will grow to fear failure, stop taking risks, and not live up to his full potential. Some of the most encouraging findings around growth mindset are that adults have HUGE influence in helping kids develop a growth mindset and it’s NEVER TOO LATE. No wonder that schools… Read More

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Happy Student, Happy Life

August 31, 2016

When parents are asked what they desire most for their children’s future, not surprisingly the overwhelming response includes the word happiness. And yet, we grown-ups might be doing just the opposite. Regardless of what we tell our children, they primarily learn by our example. And when our heartfelt efforts to give our children the very best sometimes violate what we believe or know to be right, we understandably forgive ourselves. But our children? Our children model what they see, not what they’re told. And that implies that we might be inadvertently instilling behaviors and beliefs that will make their long-term happiness that much more elusive. But we can, and should, change. Here’s how. Our Top Science-Based Strategies of What Parents Should Stop Saying and Start Doing Stop Saying “You need to work hard… Read More

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Back-to-School Essential Reads

August 16, 2016

Re-engaging after a long summer vacation can be tough. So tough that students often need to spend the first month of school reviewing the last two months of the previous school year. Adults are no different. So, today we share with you the most important things that your summer brain might have missed or forgotten. These reads will get you ready to make this the best school year yet. A Parent’s Guide to the First Six Weeks  A primer for parents to ensure a good transition. How to Crush School  Review of new book for middle and high school students by teacher Oskar Cymermann. Teaches teens to develop study skills for school and life success. The Forgetting Curve Learning is a different skill from remembering,… Read More

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A Parent’s Guide to the First Six Weeks of School

August 2, 2016

Before School Starts:  One or two weeks before the start of school, have some one-on-one time with each child. Discuss the upcoming year. Do a lot more listening than speaking– you want to hear their concerns and allay them. For younger students, parents might need to set expectations for homework time and grades. For teens, it might be time to let your child set realistic expectations about their classes, grades, and extra-curriculars. Then agree on a schedule or routine to make it happen that includes sufficient sleep, full meals, and time for relaxation. Week 1: Focus on a good adjustment. For younger kids, do they have the seat that will enable them to focus? Are they comfortable speaking to their teacher? Do they… Read More

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Mindprint Exclusive: Parent-Teacher Conference Tip Sheet

June 29, 2016

Parent-teacher conferences provide a wonderful opportunity to for parents and teachers to connect. View it as a starting point for a year-long dialog and not a one-time chance to be heard. When you take the perspective that the conference is just a beginning, you no longer need to rush through your points. Instead follow this list so you can best support your child throughout the year. Need more information how to effectively support your child in school? Read more about effective parent involvement.   This is one of many exclusive Mindprint guides found in the FREE Parent & Teacher Resources section of the Mindprint website. We hope it makes it easier for you to support a child’s needs. If you’re looking for more detailed insight, consider… Read More

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5 Summer Resolutions for School Year Success

June 21, 2016

by Mindprint Staff New Year’s might be the traditional time to make resolutions, but at Mindprint we believe the summer solstice can mark the best opportunity to make important lifestyle changes. Summer affords plenty of time to persevere and make sure that those new habits stick without the competing demands and stress of a rigorous academic schedule. We’ve picked our favorites that should be relatively easy to keep once you get started and can truly benefit the whole family. Our Top 5 Summer Resolutions for Kids of All Ages 1) Get Enough Sleep. According to the National Institutes of Health, school-aged children should be getting 10 hours of sleep a night. A good night’s sleep improves emotional and physical health and enhances learning and retention. During the school year,… Read More

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