What makes a kid successful in school?

Filed under: Just For Moms, Just For Dads, Day Care & Education

While parents all over may breathing a sigh of relief over the approaching first day of school, some will find themselves worried about how their child will do in class this year. Ellie is starting at a new school that will be very different from the Montessori world she's been living in for the past two years. I want more than anything for her school days to be a positive and enriching experience. And of course, I want her to learn.

What makes a kid successful and happy at school? According to Sharon and Craig Ramey, both Ph.D. professors at Georgetown, many different things contribute to school success and parents play a big role. They are the authors of a book, Going to School, where they offer a list of "Ten Hallmarks of Children Who Succeed." On the surface, most seem like traits that a kid either possesses or doesn't. But the authors say that each is a "dynamic process that can be positively influenced by parents."

Some of the hallmarks should be obvious to parents. Like number one on the list - "eager to learn." These are children who have been offered opportunities since early childhood to explore and satisfy their curiosity. Others, like number 8 - "follow helpful family routines" aren't so obvious. Children need routine and having regular meals, baths and sleep times better prepares them for the routine of school.

Check out the rest of the list. No matter the age of your child, it's never too early or too late to start helping them acquire the tools they need to succeed in school.

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Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.