5 Simple ways busy parents can help raise smarter kids
Here’s how parents can help kids grow up to be more exceptional despite their busy schedules, according to research
In recent years, studies have found that intelligence is based on both nurture then nature. Research has also found that parents, not just schools and teachers, help shape a child's learning experience in a significant way.
For busy parents, finding time to sit down with your child and go through their lessons can be a challenge, but knowing intelligence isn't fixed can encourage parents to make time to do their part in making their kids more clever.
Here's how you can play a significant role in your child's learning and development.
Don't do their homework for them
Remember not to do your child's assignments for them. Instead, guide and engage them. Observe what they're interested in. It's important for parents to provide kids with learning opportunities, says education expert Deborah Eyre, author of Great Minds and How to Grow Them in an interview with Fatherly. Encouraging them doesn't mean pushing or pressuring them, she clarifies. Engage them in a way that they're more motivated to learn and grow.
Allow them to struggle
Don't solve their problems for them. No parent wants to see their kids have a difficult time, but when it comes to learning, a little struggle is necessary. It prevents them of forming the habit of giving up easily. This applies to even the simplest things, even tying their own shoelaces, for instance. When you're in a rush, trying to make sure your child's needs are met, it's normal to overlook certain simple learning opportunities. Being aware of these little teachable moments is a great way of facilitation your child's education.
Encourage curiosity and creativity
Little changes in your daily routine can spark a child's curiosity and creativity. For example, when reading bedtime stories, why not try and change the characters or allow them to tell their own story? Introduce new cuisine into their diet that will provide an opportunity to learn about other cultures. You can also rearrange her bedroom and add new toys and books.
Avoid "half-listening", Eyre cautions busy parents. Show your child that you're truly paying attention to their questions. Encourage them to ask away. Don't make them feel that their questions are silly because this is how you can nurture their inquisitive nature, which is a trait that will help them become better learners as they grow. Ask them more questions, too, showing them that you yourself are curious about their interests and that learning never stops.
Support their school and teachers
A bulk of your child's learning will happen within the four walls of a classroom, so work closely with their teachers and their school to help provide your child with the best learning environment. You know your child best. Don't hesitate to form friendships with your child's educators, as this will encourage openness and collaboration. Your child's learning is in your hands!