Hudson Valley Parent

HVP July 2016

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Page 40 of 43 n Hudson Valley Parent 41 "I...try to figure out the child's level of skills, learning style, and tap into his interests while focusing on specific learning modalities that [are] best for the child. It is import- ant that a teacher create a learning environment that encourages each student's voice to be recognized and respected. This lets a student know that he or she can take risks..." "...Teacher(s), parent(s) and child(ren) need to understand there is no 'one size fits all model'... Ultimately, I need to reach them to teach them. There is no better feel- ing for a child to know that they are believed in and that they have goals that can be achieved." "It's not because the student is lazy. It can be a social or emotion- al barrier, economic reasons, too many outside responsibilities, their interests are not being met or there is a learning disability. Behaviors a parent may note are absences, sports participation has changed, or they [are] battling with the student to do homework." "The key to helping a student reach his potential is communication among staff and between the school and the parent. The first thing is to motivate a student, we'll move them from their comfort zone - for example, encourage them to take an Advance Prep course if the work they are currently doing is too easy." "We have an opportunity to see a student in various venues whereas parents see him mostly home. When parents have concerns they should contact us. We encourage parents to utilize the online portal to see a child's performance for day-to-day on quizzes, homework, and projects. Once we reach out and work togeth- er, the student has a better chance to succeed." "I'm an interventionist in my classroom. I am a parent as well as a teacher and I do have advice for parents when they become con- cerned about their child's classroom performance. " "Getting support from the school is vital, and change will not happen until the child is intrinsically moti- vated. I first...advise parents not to become another teacher with tasks to complete. Instead be the child's cheerleader and advocate." "Engage your child by visiting museums. The local a fabulous resource. Read with and to them, and use, which helps children by listening to Kirk Reinhardt Principal Kingston High School Cathy McFadden Literacy Specialist Monticello Central School District a fluent reader. Let them take art classes. ...Remember to communi- cate with your child often and not to dummy down vocabulary." "There are several things [we] can observe [to see] whether a student is reaching his potential. For example, [if] the student does well in sports but there is no enthusiasm for aca- demics, does a student show interest for learning new things outside of school but [is just] not exhibiting the same behavior in class? " "Sometimes I'll discover that the parent and child don't read at home, so I ask them to expand on reading five minutes more each day to keep building with small realistic goals." "Speak regularly with your children [and] don't judge. Asking how school is going and showing an interest motivates your child to succeed." Joan Reid is a Hudson Valley free- lance writer. UNDERACHIEVING STUDENTS (Continued from Page 27) Dana Brown Director of English Language Arts & Social Studies Arlington Central School District

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