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Preparing kids for the new school year is a great time to teach the all-important principle of personal accountability and responsibility. How do you teach kids that they are in charge of their own learning?
One thing that will help is to find some time to talk to the kids about owning their own learning. A practical activity that helps with this principle is to have your children write one goal that they want to accomplish this year. Writing gives children a voice. There is a lot of power in getting your child to write his or her goal and then work toward it. Build a plan with your child about how to achieve the goal and then help them accomplish it. What lesson could be more important than for your children to know that they can set a goal and accomplish it? I'm a firm believer that if you do this then you have taught your children that they have power in their own lives. Children then know that they can shape their future.
5 Keys to Creating SMART Kids:
S = Share your vision of who your children are. Get an insightful vision of who your kids are. Talk about principles (hard worker, great family heritage, smart, funny, etc.) Every time you see that vision, point it out to them.
M = Make your example speak louder than words. Model for your children what you want them to achieve. Model a healthy, happy and productive person, who is accountable for themselves.
A = Affirm your child's worth every chance you get. Their worth doesn't come by their looks or their sporting ability, or even their grades. Their worth comes because they are an incredible, amazing human being with incredible potential.
R = Respect their desires as much as your own. You don't have to agree with what they think but you need to try to understand and at least respect their point of view. Show that you can respect their desires and try to understand them, even if you don't agree with it. People need to know that their ideas and their voice matter. When someone voices their hurt and a parent, or someone else, discounts their hurt, "Oh come on, it wasn't that bad" it invalidates them. Allow them to have their hurt or their feelings.
T = Tell them that you love them no matter what. Even if you feel let down make sure your child knows that you love them. Kids need to know they are loved no matter what. They need to know that they are loved for who they are. They need to know that you love them unconditionally.CLICK HERE for more about getting the kids ready for a new school year. (Depending on the speed of your internet connection, this could take a few minutes to download the audio.)