Have you ever heard the term “pivotal point”?  Well, this is your captain speaking, we have arrived at our destination.  Right now is a pivotal point in the school year for students.  The word pivotal is defined as, “of critical importance in relation to the development or success of something else”.  We all hope for the development and success of our children.  According to the definition, this point in time is of critical importance to the development or success of students in school.  I love the word “critical”; it is a very strong word that expresses the importance of a situation.  For our purposes, the word critical refers to a turning point or specially important juncture.  Your child’s school may or may not still issue progress reports, some schools have done away with progress reports because (thanks to technology) student’s grades are always available to parents.  Regardless, there is a reason why progress reports are (were) issued around this time of the school year.  Quite literally, this is the point in the year in which students progress should be evaluated.  If students are doing well, this is the time to applaud them and accelerate toward Christmas break.  If students are doing poorly, this is the time to figure out a plan to turn that frown upside down.  For parents, life with kids is constantly busy and it seems as if there is never enough time in the day to get everything done.  That being said, I urge you to set aside some time to sit down with your child and talk to them about how the school year is going.  First off, it is critical to talk to your child about how everything is going.  School performance is not the only aspect of life that matters; family life, social life, and extracurricular activities are also important aspects of your child’s life.  After talking to your child about everything, you can then turn the focus to academics.  Pull out a pen and a notebook and sit down with your child.  Go through each class that your child is in, and talk to them about how each is going.  It is a real possibility that your child might be doing well in certain subjects or classes and poorly in others.  Identify the classes in which they are doing well, and have a conversation about why they are having success.  Which strategies are working well?  Figure out what is driving the success.  Conversely, identify the subjects or classes in which they are struggling.  Have a conversation to find out which strategies are not working and work together to come up with strategies that might work better.  Identify the problems in order to find a solution.  Is the problem a deficiency in any or all of the following areas; time management, organization, test taking, note taking, focus, effort, etc?  Or is it just simply that the material is difficult and your child needs tutoring or enrichment?  The good news that there ares solutions available no matter what the problem might be.  The important thing to remember is that you must first identify the problems in order to seek solutions.

Progress Check

At this pivotal point, during this critical time, make sure you sit down with your child and check their progress.  A simple conversation could go a long way to straighten the current academic path of your child.  Do away with all the worry, fear, and stress of school.  Here are the steps to take during your progress check:
If your child is doing well in school and is currently on the path to success:
  • Congratulate your child and offer positive feedback
  • Identify the strategies that are leading to success and encourage your child to keep practicing these strategies
  • Create a set of short and long-term goals to keep your child on the clear path to success
  • Remind your child that is important to seek help if difficulty arises in the future
If your child is current struggling and needs help to get back on the path to success:
  • Offer understanding and sympathy regarding difficult coursework
  • If the problem is lack of effort, express your disappointment and remind your child of your expectations
  • Identify which learning strategies are not working and discuss why they do not seem to be effective
  • Come up with learning strategies that you both think could lead to achieving success
  • Address any lifestyle changes that you think need to happen in order for your child to be successful in school
  • Make sure your child understands why academic success is so important to the future
  • Set achievable short-term goals and decide how these goals will achieve long-term success
  • If difficult coursework material is the problem, seek out tutoring and enrichment
  • If study skills or lack of effective learning strategies is the problem, seek out enrichment in these areas

We offer online courses that you and your child can complete together.  These courses teach students systematic learning strategies and help students identify which strategies are right for them.  The goal is for students to achieve strategic flexibility and use learning strategies to achieve success.  If your child struggles in any of the following areas, our courses can help: organization, time management, setting goals. test taking, memorization, study habits, note-taking, reading textbooks, writing essays.

Click the link to check out our courses: https://takeushigherlearning.com/course-list/