As a parent, you no doubt want your kids to fulfil their potential at school. With this in mind, here are a few simple suggestions that may help you to boost your children’s performance in the classroom.
Offer music lessons
One top tip is to offer your youngsters music lessons. As well as providing them with a useful skill and potentially a rewarding lifelong hobby, these sessions may enhance your kids’ academic abilities. Many studies into the effects of music lessons suggest that they can have a positive impact on learning. For example, one piece of research conducted in Canada found that musically trained children aged four to six performed better in memory tests than kids who had not had such lessons. Meanwhile, a study conducted at the University of Toronto revealed that the IQ scores of six-year-olds who had taken voice or keyboard lessons were three points higher on average than normal. Speaking to the BBC about the beneficial impact of learning instruments, musical psychology expert Professor Raymond MacDonald said: “There is now considerable evidence that taking part in musical activities can influence other areas of our development. And there is no doubt that music can play a very important role in a young child’s development.”
If you think your youngsters could benefit from music lessons but you’re not sure which instruments would suit them best, bear in mind you can take advantage of the hire services offered by instrument providers such as Caswell’s Strings. This means you don’t have to commit to making a purchase until you’re confident that you’re doing the right thing.
Read at home
Reading at home with your kids might also enhance their prospects. According to a study conducted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, children whose parents regularly read with them in their first year of school were still showing the benefits when they reached the age of 15. Based on teenagers in 14 developed countries, the analysis suggested that those who had been helped with reading by their parents at the start of school were on average six months ahead in reading levels at the age of 15.
This parental input was found to override other social disadvantages and in some countries it led to an advantage in reading levels of more than a year.
Get the basics right
When it comes to boosting children’s learning, it’s important to get the basics right too. For example, making sure your youngsters benefit from a stable home environment, plenty of sleep and nutritious meals could help them to excel in the classroom.
In particular, research has highlighted the importance of making sure children benefit from a good breakfast before they start the school day. One study, which was conducted by the Toronto District School Board, looked at 6,000 students in schools where free breakfasts were offered before or during the first lesson. It found that around 78 per cent of the youngsters who ate breakfast on most days were on track for graduation, whereas this dropped to 61 per cent among those who ate breakfast on just a few days or not at all.
All kids are different and there is no guaranteed way to ensure they will excel at school. However, by following suggestions like these, you can give your youngsters the best possible chance of success.