Each week, we will be posting about pertinent articles on educational and school-related topics, how they relate to Engaging Minds students (and parents!), and how to apply this information to your child(ren). We will also be posting original content pertaining specifically to the Engaging Minds approach and philosophy with tips on how to improve and enhance your child(ren)’s learning experience.
Our hope for this blog is to make it a valuable resource for parents. To that end, if you read any interesting articles or have any suggestions for topics, please feel free to email Dan Levine at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, please comment on posts in the section below with your own input, ideas, and experiences. While we can’t promise we will be able to use all of your suggestions, we would very much appreciate your contributions and thoughtfulness!
In school, developing academic self-sufficiency often requires a skill called self-advocacy, or a student’s ability to “effectively communicate, convey, negotiate or assert his or her own interests, desires, needs, and rights” (VanReusen et al., 1994). Most importantly, self-advocacy “involves making informed decisions and taking responsibility for those decisions,” usually independently or with minimal help from parents and school authorities. Sooner or later, every student will grow into adult, and will need to use their skills, intellect, manners and morals on their own terms. So why not start practicing now? And why not start with self-advocacy in the classroom and at home?
It is wise to be wary of old wives’ tales, myths, rumors, and superstition. But when a phenomenon is supported by substantial data, it’s hard to keep looking the other way! Although parents, students, and educators all hate to admit it, students experience significant learning loss when they are out of school during summer months. This learning loss, often referred to as the “Summer Slide,” is the real deal, and has long-reaching effects. Luckily, the Summer Slide is preventable with the right tools, goals, and programming. Parents and educators can help students stay academically engaged throughout the warmer months, counteract significant learning losses, and even make some learning gains.
In light of the recent marathon, we are all feeling Boston Strong. Watching the runners and celebrating their achievements has become a cornerstone of Boston’s culture, and, in many ways, has shown us how to overcome challenge together as a city. At Engaging Minds, the marathon has got us thinking: Wouldn’t it be wonderful to inject a bit of the marathoners’ grit and strength into our students’ educations? We’d love for our students to know that perseverance, training, and commitment can take them a long way, maybe even farther than 26.2 miles.
Spring is finally here, and with it comes beautiful weather, school dances, graduations, April vacations, and endless other (incredibly fun) distractions for students. So, as the weather gets warm, and spring fever officially hits, it’s especially important for parents and educators to double their efforts in helping children stay focused, maintain their motivation, use their executive function skills, and succeed through the end of the year. Students, too, need to try a little harder to keep their eyes on their books, especially when the great outdoors and summer months are calling.
Your family is packing for a tropical vacation. Your children are in the other room, excitedly filling their suitcases with assorted items: swim goggles, a sweatshirt, frisbees, a bathing suit, and a pair of pants. “Done!” one of them shouts, and rushes around the corner into your room. He drags his small, zipped-up suitcase behind him. “What did you bring?” you ask him, and he recounts an odd list of garments and toys. “Did you remember any T-shirts? What about your toothpaste? Don’t forget your sneakers!” You send him back to his bedroom to find and add the missing clothing, toiletries, and more.