Parents, are you ready for back-to-school? Your parenting mindset just might be the most important way to impact your children’s learning and development!
The following authors share the latest thinking and research on learning, achievement, family well-being, parent engagement, special needs children, youth sports, media, technology, discipline, homework, bullying — all the things parents think about at back-to-school time.
As your children get back to school and resettled into their routines, take some time for yourself – to reflect on your own values about education and how you can more intentionally support your children. I’ve compiled what I believe are some of the best back-to-school articles for parents – from a variety of reputable bloggers. The list is divided by topic and I’ve put a short summary of what you will find in each one. This list was updated for back-to-school 2014!
For “big picture” thinking about education and child development, check out my free eBook Reframing Success: Helping Children & Teens Grow from the Inside Out. It shows how grades and test scores are only one aspect of success and how we all nurture vital skills and abilities in young people. This year, I’ve added a free guide to how parents and schools impact youth success. Feel free to review the Internal Compass and download the free guide.
Read the articles that pique your interest now and bookmark others for later. And if you like particular authors, be sure to follow their articles throughout the school year by signing up for their RSS feeds or email subscriptions. I’ve also included links to their Twitter accounts and Facebook pages to make following your favorites easy.
I guarantee you’ll find some meaningful food for thought here – whether it’s back-to-school time or anytime! You’ll meet some great people who support children’s positive growth and well-being. Happy reading!
Back-to-School Basics: Learning & Achievement
1. The Ivy League, Mental Illness, and the Meaning of Life by Lauren Davis in The Atlantic. Great back-to-school reading for parents who believe an Ivy League education leads to a meaningful life. Twitter
2. Parents & Teachers: 6 Ways to Inspire the Teen Brain by Sandra Bond Chapman Ph.D., at Psychology Today. Get tips to stimulate the teen brain from findings in neuroscience. Twitter
4. The Developmental Psychologists’ Back-to-School Shopping List by Gabrielle Principe, Ph.D., at Psychology Today. Five ways to improve children’s learning at all ages, grounded in scientific research.
5. The Neuroscience Behind Stress and Learning by Judy Willis, M.D., at Edutopia. Research has linked stress and anxiety to motivation and learning. Read about the proven effects of positive motivation. Twitter
6. A Link Between Relatedness and Academic Achievement by Ugo Uche, LPC, at Psychology Today. The key to student success relies not just with the teacher’s attitude toward the student, but also with the student’s attitude towards the teacher. Parents help develop these attitudes! Twitter
7. How Family Game Night Makes Kids Into Better Students by Jessica Lahey at The Atlantic. How games can be fun for families and improve kids’ learning in the summer and when they are back at school. Twitter
11. Relationships are the Key to Performance not Ability by Rick Ackerly at the Genius in Children. Learn why family and school relationships have the most impact in helping kids develop well-being and learning to succeed in life. Twitter
12. The Happy Teen: A Primer on the Positives in Youth Development by Stephen Gray Wallace, M.S.Ed., at Psychology Today. Read some good news about adolescent development.
15. The Moment I Stopped Being Perfect: The Truth About Perfect Moms by Katie Hurley at Huffington Post. Why perfectionism is not the best parenting strategy. Twitter; Facebook
17. Positive Parenting: How to Follow Through With Limits by Ariadne Brill at Positive Parenting Connection. Excellent advice on why and how parents should set limits, particularly with young children. Twitter; Facebook
18. 4 Surprising Ways to Support a Child’s Self-Regulation & Avoid Melt Down by Lindsey Lieneck. A great article on mindful strategies that brings kids’ awareness to their bodies and help them manage their emotions. Twitter; Facebook
21. How to Teach Your Kids it’s OK to Have Less than their Friends by Jacoba Urist at TODAY Moms. As economic disparity grows, children need to understand their family’s values more than ever. Twitter
Parent-Readiness and Engagement
22. Parent Involvement: The Missing Key to Student Achievement by James Norwood, Ph.D., at Teaching in the Middle. Learn why developing a partnership with school is one of the most important things you can do to help your child. Twitter
23. 9 Tips for Parents if Your Child is Changing Schools by Meryl Ain, Ed.D., at Your Education Doctor. Must-read tips for parents to help children get comfortable in a new school. Twitter; Facebook
24. Twenty-Five Education Blogs Perfect for Parents (And Just About Anyone Else) by Jeff Dunn at Edudemic. Excellent blogs to follow to keep abreast of what’s going on in education. Twitter; Facebook
26. Developing Belief Systems About Education: It Takes a Village by Nicole Rivera, Ed.D., at Psychology Today. Children develop beliefs about education through what their parents believe.
27. Top 10 Pinterest Boards for Parents by Cathy James at the NurtureStore. If you are looking for educational projects to do with preschool and elementary school-age children at home, Pinterest is the place to be! Twitter; Facebook
Children with Special Needs, Abilities & Personalities
31. Five Strategies for Smooth Operating for the New School Year by Cindy Goldrich, Ed.M., at PTSCoaching. Good advice on getting organized, managing time, and using low-tech strategies to support children with ADHD at back-to-school time. Twitter; Facebook
32. Five Ways to Help Your Child Transition Back to School by Chynna Laird at Special-Ism. Mom of a child with Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) talks about creating a transition plan for supporting special needs children. Twitter; Facebook
35. From Perfection to Personal Bests: 7 Ways to Nurture Your Gifted Child by Signe Whitson at HuffPost Parents. How to develop a growth mindset in your high-ability child. Twitter; Facebook
Homework: A Back-to-School Reality
36. Reducing Homework Stress by Lori Lite at Stress Free Kids. Back-to-school and homework go together. Here are 10 tips to help parents, teens, and children with the daily homework routine. Twitter; Facebook
37. Who Takes Responsibility for Homework? What is the Parent’s Role? By Rick Ackerly at The Genius in Children. Helping kids understand the consequences and rewards of homework. Twitter; Facebook
39. Soccer, Baseball or Karate? Top 10 Reasons to Involve Your Kids in Sports by Signe Whitson at Psychology Today. Reasons why being a sports chauffer can pay big rewards. Twitter; Facebook
41. How to Help Kids Be “Winning” Losers in Youth Sports by Patrick Cohn, Ph.D., at The Ultimate Sports Parent Blog. Learn how losing in sports develops internal skills like perseverance, determination, and the ability to adapt to adversity. Twitter; Facebook
43. Mean Girls: Why Teenage Girls Can Be So Cruel by Chris Hudson at Understanding Teenagers. Learn how gender influences adolescent behavior in friendship groups and why girls have a natural tendency toward social aggression. Twitter; Facebook
46. Bullying Runs Deep: Breaking the Code of Silence that Protects Bullies by Michelle Baker at HuffPost Education. A poignant and personal story with deep insights for parents. Twitter
Media & Technology
47. Parenting: Who is More Powerful: Technology or Parents? By Jim Jaylor, Ph.D., at Psychology Today. How are you flexing your parenting muscles against the strength of today’s media? Twitter; Facebook
48. How Much Television is Too Much? Science Weighs In by Todd B. Kashdan, Ph.D., at Psychology Today. Science vs. common-sense parenting. Twitter
49. Will Watching Violent Video Games Affect Your Teen’s Behavior? By Dennis E. Coates, Ph.D., at How to Raise a Teenager. Get both sides of the story about violent video games. Twitter
53. Why Punishment Does Not Make Good Neurological Sense by Meredith White-McMahon, Ed.D., at Development in the Digital Age. How punishment differs from discipline. Twitter
55. The 5 C’s of Effective Discipline: Setting Rules for Children by Ben Martin, Psy.D., at PsychCentral. Important and simple discipline rules to remember.
Image Credits: Nuttikit