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How Busy Parents Can Stay Involved

There are ways that busy parents can stay involved in their children's educational growth.  Whether you work outside of the home, run a home office, or take care of other children, you too can be a part of your child's life that they will remember for a lifetime.

Baking - Schools have many different events throughout the year for which they need baked goods.  Whether it is a bake sale or a school carnival, cupcakes and cookies are always welcome.  Make it a fun activity with your kids by having them make the goodies with you.  To cut down on time if you are really pressed, buy prepackaged cookie dough, or make your cookie dough and store it for baking day.

Story Time - Every employer gives you a lunch break.  Many do not take advantage or the lunch break in order to get as much done as possible in the short time they have at the office.  Why not take one lunch break per month and head over to the school and read your daughter's class a book at story time?  Imagine the smile on that little girl's face when you walk through the classroom door on that special day each month.

The library is a great place to go for children and adults alike.  One Saturday per month is all takes to show your children that you are interested and that their education matters to you.  Libraries have many activities, groups and reading times for children of different age groups.  Ask for information at your local library.

Be sure to read a book with your children each night.  Stories are wonderful ways to wind down a rambunctious youngster at the end of the day, and a great way to snuggle with those you love.  Reading encourages imagination; creative thought instills a love for learning.

Together Time - Turn off the TV, look through your child's backpack with him and go over any graded papers and additional class notes.  Be sure to go through the backpack each day, as your child's teacher uses this as their main connection between you and the school.  Important meetings, behavior reports, special kudos and planned field trips are just a few examples of what you will find inside.

Do Your Homework - Many parents would love to be able to volunteer at the school, but are unable due to time constraints, their job, or little ones at home.  If you are unable to volunteer inside the classroom, why not ask for some homework?  Teachers are always thrilled at the prospect of parents helping and becoming involved.  There may be some cutting, sorting, or other such tasks that your child's teacher could use help with that do not require your presence at school.  What a great way to encourage your child to get his homework done.  Now you can do it together.

Staying involved in your child's school life will show him that you care about him and his future.  It will encourage him to work harder if he knows that you will be there to tell him what a great job he did on his math test or on that science project.  Get involved; your child will love you for it.

EA Report Brown Bagger/September 2002