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Monday, August 20, 2012

Parent’s Perspective- Part 5

As part of our Parent’s Perspective series, Lorie Gant Leitner gives us all some great insight into Getting Schooled – From the Sidelines.

When my son, Noah, started Kindergarten, I was excited at the prospect of attending field trips and class parties; however, other activities ate up my available vacation days from work. I found myself mastering how to prep and participate from the sidelines.

Find a trusty sidekick.
Since I couldn’t attend field trips to the pumpkin patch or children’s hospital...
...I reached out to my mom. She became a regular volunteer, snapping photos and filling me in about the trip’s funny moments.

Become a pen pal.
When I wasn’t clear on the details for a school event, I sent handwritten notes with Noah’s school folder to his kindergarten assistant for a quick reply. The same held true when I sent emails to his teacher or principal. It helped me ensure that from his clothing to extra spending money, Noah was prepared.

Bring the loot.
I’m a sucker for a themed party so when Noah’s class planned their holiday celebrations, I sent food and favors. To get Noah excited, I always took him with me to the store to let him pick out the goodies.

Brown bag it.
While I couldn’t get away for the day, I carved out time to visit Noah during his lunch. It gave me an opportunity to see him in his element at school. Besides lunch, our family attended skating parties, ice cream fundraisers, book fairs, and a winter carnival. This was a great time to meet teachers, Noah’s friends, and their parents.

Take the long way home.
There is no better opportunity to have your kid’s full attention than the ride home from school. I gain most of my insight about Noah’s day during these trips. Midway through the school year, I noticed he also asked about my day and if I’d had fun.  Supporting your kid doesn’t have to mean being in person at class events. There are many opportunities to stay involved – even from a distance – which show him or her that you are thinking of them.


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