For Parents

Parents and Parenting for the 21st Century

PARENT RTK TITLE I PART A

Make Eye Contact When You Correct Your Child

Your child is more likely to mind you if he’s really listening to you. Here’s a way to make sure he is.

  • When you must reprimand your child, move close to him. Raise your voice only slightly—just enough to get him to look at you as you speak.
  • Keep a neutral expression on your face. (That means no smiles and no bug eyes from anger.) And lock eyes.
  • Ask for the behavior you want and hold eye contact for a moment after speaking. Your point will not only have been made but heard.

Source: James Windell, “Discipline and Much Better Parenting,” Bottom Line Personal, Bottom Line Publications.


Labels Can Help Your Child Learn to Read and Spell

When your child was learning to talk, he started by learning the names of things that were most familiar to him. That’s also a good way for him to learn to read.

Here is a way that you can help your child learn to read:

  • Write the names of familiar objects on small pieces of paper.
  • Then tape the pieces of paper to those items in the room.
  • Ask your child to spell the name of a certain object.
  • Watch as he goes to the object and spells it from the paper.

Not only will your child improve his reading—and spelling—skills, you will be able to take a few moments out to sit down and rest.


Your Role in an IEP Meeting

All children who receive special education services must have an Individualized Education Program (IEP). Parents play an important role in developing the IEP. Dr. Kenneth Shore, author of The Parents’ Public School Handbook, suggests how you can prepare for this meeting so you can make sure the IEP meets your child’s needs.

  • Get to know your child. All children have strengths—and weaknesses. Before the IEP meeting, look over samples of your child’s schoolwork. Talk with him to find out his feelings about what he does well or poorly. Listen carefully as he talks about school. You may hear clues about how your child learns best.
  • Do your homework. Talk with other parents whose children receive special education. See if your school district has a special education parents’ organization. The school should give you a copy of your state’s special education code. If they do not, request one.
  • Think about having your child attend part—or all—of the meeting. The older the child, the more likely he will be to take a meaningful role.
  • Take notes. You may want to ask another person to come with you to keep a record of what is said. That way, you can concentrate on what you want to say in the meeting.
  • Offer your views. You know your child better than anyone in the room. You should be able to help the teacher by suggesting things that will—or will not—work with your child. For example, you may have learned that he works well for about 15 minutes, but then needs a break. Or, that he needs an example or two before he starts working.
  • Ask for clarification. Special education is almost another language. You may hear initials like EMR, LD, ADD or WISC-R. Ask for an explanation of these terms to make sure everyone is speaking the same language.

Source: Kenneth Shore, The Parents’ Public School Handbook.