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Does the Learning Stop After the Child Leaves the Classroom?

written by: Jacqueline Chinappi • edited by: Wendy Finn • updated: 1/5/2012

Are teachers the only ones who should be involved in a child's life educationally? While many parents feel that the learning should be left for the classroom I happen to think differently. Here I will set out to explain why it is better to be your child's first teacher.

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    Education in the Home

    I have been both an insider and outsider when it comes to the idea of learning in the classroom. What I mean by this is I have been both the teacher and the parent. So I know that the grass is not always greener so to speak on the other side. There seems to be this pointing fingers kind of debate as to who is actually teaching the students and who should have a part in teaching the students. Since the teacher is the “Teacher” shouldn’t they be the only ones teaching? Or since the parents are the ones raising the child shouldn’t they implement some lessons and continue the teaching in the home?

    The Parent's Responsibility

    I as a parent whole heartily believe that it is the parent’s responsibility to ensure that your child does the best that he or she can do in regards to anything in life not just education. Many parents these days though feel as if the teachers should be the only outlet for the child in regards to expanding their knowledge and many believe that the teaching stops after that last school bell rings. So what, three o’clock comes and the students should just empty their brains until the next morning?

    I am my child’s first teacher and was very surprised to learn that others I have met did not teach their children at home before they entered school. I am not saying you must teach the child his or her multiplication system when he or she is three years old, but it would be nice if the child knew his or her alphabet when entering kindergarten. I could not wait to teach my child the alphabet, counting, etc. And now as she has recently entered kindergarten I am well aware that I have taught my child what she needed to know and more so to be a productive individual in the classroom.

    Setting your Child Up for Success

    If a child has education in the home as well as the classroom, then believe me he or she will benefit immensely. Not only will the parent be more involved in the child’s education this involvement will also influence the child’s self-esteem as the parent is building a bond with the child. When a parent leaves educational responsibilities to the teacher alone, they are not only hurting the child but they are hurting their relationship with the child.

    Some tips to get involved in your child’s education:

    • Ask what they have for homework
    • Ask what they did in school that day
    • Ask what their favorite subject is
    • Ask what their least favorite subject is
    • Go through their homework and folders every night and check to make sure they are doing the work
    • Contact the teacher even if there are no real concerns, teachers like to have parents touch base.

    How do you keep your child learning outside of a traditional classroom?