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The Parent’s Role: K-5
This is a time when parents exercise a great deal of influence over what, and how, their children learn. Your role in supporting your child's aspirations for postsecondary education can start very early in life- as early as birth. Set aside some time each day, perhaps bedtime, to read aloud to your child. This nightly ritual will greatly enhance your child's reading development while fostering a love of reading. The ability to read, and comprehend, is the underpinning of all other future learning.
Here are some tips for supporting your K-5 student:
- Surround your child with reading materials. Create a home library of reading materials from which your child can choose. Expose your child to the public library and take regular family trips to the local library. Get your child their very own library card and allow them to choose the books they would like to read.
- Discuss what is being read. Talk about the stories you are sharing and ask questions about them. This will help your child develop the important skills of comprehension and retention. Relate the stories to things that are occurring in your child’s or family’s life, whenever possible.
- Limit time spent watching television and monitor what your child watches. There are many educational programs for all ages. Participate in selecting the programs.
- Give your child opportunities to express their creativity in writing, singing, cooking, dressing, and any other way you can think of. Proudly display their work for all to see.
- Visit a college campus and expose your child to campus life early. There are many great ways to visit college campuses such as visiting siblings in college, attending a sporting event, or going to a production of the college theater. The idea is for your child to understand that college is part of the community, and a place they will attend when they get older.
- It is important that your child develops problem-solving skills. These skills allow children to identify and set goals, develop attention and persistence, and begin to recognize and reflect on consequences of their actions. Children will gain confidence in themselves by finding solutions to problems on their own.
- As you may be aware, most colleges require some form of standardized testing as an admissions requirement. The SAT tests students in the areas of reading, writing, and mathematics. Developing your child’s reading and problem-solving skills are a great way to prepare for standardized testing. While it is important to understand the significance that SAT scores have in the college process, they are not the end all be all of college admissions. Remember, colleges admit students not test scores.