How to support your child Research shows that parental involvement in their children's learning is an important factor in improving children's academic attainment and achievements, as well as their overall behaviour and attendance. Good quality home learning contributes more to children's intellectual and social development than parental occupation, education or income. Please see below for some suggestions: you may be doing some or all of these already. Getting used to the big change
In the early days of starting at secondary, give your child a bit of leeway - they're going to need a bit of time to get used to their new routine, following a timetable and all the new situations. It may take a few weeks for them to start feeling confident and relaxed.
Encourage your child to pack their school bag and lay out their uniform before going to bed each evening.
Try to make sure your child eats breakfast - this provides essential energy and will help him or her perform better at school.
Ensure your child is familiar with travel routine and times; whether you take them yourself or they catch a bus. Knowing in advance what time to be ready to leave the house always helps to be prepared.
Check each evening for letters home, permission forms or the contact diary to sign (see below), as this will help avoid early morning panic and items being forgotten.
Make a copy of your child's weekly timetable. It's good to have a copy in case they lose it and you can also help them make sure they pack their bag each night with all the things they need for the next day. You will also know when they will need gym kit, to avoid any last-minute panics trying to find gym shoes and realising that their shorts are in the wash in the morning, half an hour before they have to leave.
Useful items As well as the uniform and gym kit they will need a few extras such as:
Pencil case and plenty of pens, pencils, rubber, ruler, pencil sharpener.
A rucksack/bag that is big enough for all their jotters and textbooks, but one which they can carry easily as they will have to lug it round with them all day.
Welsh-English & Welsh-French dictionaries.
Your child will have a contact diary in order to make a note of the tasks set by teachers and where any messages between home and school may be recorded. We would ask you to sign the diary on a weekly basis to help ensure that this communication is as effective as possible.
Your child will need to work more independently at secondary school than at primary school. But your interest and input will still be important and will help your child to do well. Look for opportunities to talk to your child about schoolwork; try to find topics you’re both interested in so it's a natural conversation. Ask your child if there's anything you can do to help with homework. Discuss the organisation of the work. If your child has several assignments due in on the same day, suggest they space the work out rather than leave it all until the night before. The following is a rough guide to how long your child should be spending on homework at secondary school: Years 7 and 8 45 to 90 minutes a day
Year 9 60 to 120 minutes a day
Years 10 and 11 90 to 150 minutes a day
Other ways to support your child's learning You may not be reading with your child as you did at primary school but you can still support good reading habits. Talk to your child about the books you're both reading. Ask what books your child would like for birthday and Christmas presents. Go to the library together - if your child is stuck for a new author, ask the librarian for guidance or look online at book reviews. Keeping up-to-date with the news helps with schoolwork. Try to encourage your child to read a newspaper at least once or twice a week. Find news stories that connect to lesson topics. If your child is researching a subject, suggest the online archives of a good newspaper or the BBC website. If you’re planning a day out, visit a museum or gallery that will tie in with work your child is doing in subjects such as Art, English, History, Geography or Science - this can be a fun way to add depth and interest to your child's learning. Encourage the use of Welsh in the community and outside school by attending events organised by Menter Iaith Casnewydd. Bottom of Form
Learning as a family can bring significant benefits for adults and the children in their care. It can :
enhance their ability to support the child's education
help create a culture of learning
help improve their own skills and confidence
help them to understand how to support the development of the child's skills
Home School Agreement. This document provides advice on how parents and carers can work with the school to provide the best education for their child (see contact diary).
Remember to contact school if there are any problems