May is my favorite month since I get to go to many graduations and I celebrate mothers all month-long. This week, I was proud to attend my brother’s graduation from law school and I wondered what a mother can do to help a kid excel in school and see them graduate from college. Mothers are so influential in our lives. Many credit their mothers for making it all the way. I know my mother has always been so supportive of each of my steps to college.
Here are some tips on how to encourage your kids if you are a mother.
Start early. Parents who set expectations high for their kids on the very first day of pre-school do better. Everyone believes in education but saying the words is simply not enough. Take action by setting up a college fund when they are born, even $25 a month sends the message that this is something you expect! If possible, start them in school as early as you can. Pre-school sets children on a path to learning. As they grow start telling them that you believe in them, that you will help them get to college and you expect them to excel in school, demand good grades, dream big and stay on top of them.
Be involved. Being involved in your kid’s school will give you a first row seat to the great programs and scholarships that are available. Know your kids teachers, join parent programs and help around school. Even when you are tired from a long day at work, going to the parent meeting will set you and your kids on path to success by getting information others never hear about.
Be a role model. Take a class yourself, read a book, go to a museum, teach them as you run errands. This all send the message that learning is important and you care about it. More than hearing what you say, they follow what you do.
READ READ READ. Get the reading bug and set up reading time in your house. Turn off the novela and do some reading out loud! How many books do you have in your house? We are so blessed to have a free library system so there is no excuse not to have books around.
Watch your words. Words you say might bring self-doubt. You might think that you are protecting your kids my giving them a dose of reality but kids receive them as negative messages that will create barriers as kids grow. Never tell them they are dumb or lazy, they will believe you.
Wishing you a wonderful journey as a mother and a student to reach your best life! Feliz Día de las Madres.
Ana María Soto
La College Guru