Chapter 7- Staying involved with my children’s education…

Listen, my son and be wise,

and keep your heart on the right path.

Proverbs 23: 19


Hey God it’s me, Lori

Please help me to always teach my children the importance of education

not just in school but in your ways as well.

I am helping Spencer with his homework

I am helping Spencer with his homework

Staying involved with my children’s education…

How many different responsibilities does a mom have in 2009?  The list is endless, where  would I even begin?  I read this great email note, it may give you an idea and a good laugh at the same time.


Six married men will be dropped on an island with one car and 3 kids each for six weeks.

Each kid will play two sports and either take music or dance classes.

There is no fast food.

Each man must

  • Take care of his 3 kids
  • Keep his assigned house clean
  • Correct all homework
  • Complete science projects
  • Cook
  • Do laundry
  • Pay a list of ‘pretend’ bills with not enough money.

In addition, each man will have to budget in money for groceries each week.

Each man must remember the birthdays of all their friends and relatives, and send cards out on time–no emailing.

Each man must also take each child to a doctor’s appointment, a dentist appointment and a haircut appointment.

Each man must make one unscheduled and inconvenient visit per child to the Urgent Care.

Each man must also make cookies or cupcakes for a social function.

Each man will be responsible for decorating his own assigned house, planting flowers outside and keeping it presentable at all times.

The men will only have access to television when the kids are asleep and all chores are done.

The men must shave their legs, wear makeup daily, adorn himself with jewelry, wear uncomfortable yet stylish shoes, keep fingernails polished and eyebrows groomed.

During one of the six weeks, the men will have to endure severe abdominal cramps, back aches, and have extreme, unexplained mood swings but never once complain or slow down from other duties.

They must attend weekly school meetings, church, and find time at least once to spend the afternoon at the park or a similar setting.

They will need to read a book to the kids each night and in the morning, feed them, dress them, brush their teeth and comb their hair by 7:00 am.

A test will be given at the end of the six weeks, and each father will be required to know all of the following information for each child:

  • Birthday
  • Height and weight
  • Shoe size, clothes size
  • Doctor’s name
  • Weight at birth, length, time of birth, and length of labor
  • Favorite color
  • Middle name
  • Favorite snack
  • Favorite song
  • Each child’s favorite drink,
  • Favorite toy,
  • Biggest fear
  • What they want to be when they grow up.

The kids vote them off the island based on performance. The last man wins only if…he still has enough energy to be intimate with his spouse at a moment’s notice.

Nothing to it.

Is that not too funny?  But it is the truth it is amazing that moms can do all that.    They did not even mention the moms that work 40 hours a week outside of the home.  So how does a mom prioritize to get things accomplished?  Sometimes we don’t, we just try to do it all at the same time multitasking (we are queens at that).  I know when I get on that roller coaster I will crash at the bottom of the hill when the kids go to bed.  I think there are many tasks or lessons that should take top priority in our everyday lives as moms.  You will read each item I believe to be a priority in this book.  One that doesn’t seem to be talked much about is the involvement of moms in our children’s education.  I think it is imperative.

A New Wave of Evidence:  The Impact of School, Family and Community Connections

 on Student Achievement

According to this review of recent research published by the Southwest Educational Development Laboratory (2002), students with involved parents, no matter what their income or background are more likely to:  








• earn higher grades and test scores, and enroll in higher-level programs.

• be promoted, pass their classes, and earn credits.

• attend school regularly.

• have better social skills, show improved behavior, and adapt well to school.

• graduate and go on to post secondary education.

Several studies found that families of all income and education levels, and from all

ethnic and cultural groups, are engaged in supporting their children’s learning at home.

White, middle-class families, however, tend to be more involved at school. Supporting

more involvement at school from all parents may be an important strategy for addressing the achievement gap.

Evidence is out there, if you go on the internet you will quickly find how important it is to the education of our children that the parents be involved.

Because I do not work outside of the home I marvel at how a mom working outside the home can possibly get it all done.  The moms I know who do this say “It doesn’t all get done at one time”.  Most of them run errands, clean house, do laundry and essentially catch back up on the weekends.  How they find the time to make dinner, shuffle kids from different activities and help with homework is amazing to me.

Everyone of course does it differently.  When I walk my kid’s home from school with the other kids I baby-sit we first change out of uniforms, have a snack and then play in the backyard.  I feel that letting the kids run and play is so good for their little minds to stop thinking and just play.  When all the kids I baby-sit have been picked up and I am making dinner my kids do their homework at the kitchen table together.  When arguments ensue between siblings some go to their rooms to do homework others find another spot at the table.  We all do it differently though.  My sister brings the kids she baby-sits home gives them a snack and does homework then they are free to play after it has been completed.  When you do it doesn’t matter as much as being there for your child while they do it.

As a babysitter I will not do homework with other people’s children the reason for this is that I believe as a mom you need to know how your child is doing with school and be involved with it on a daily basis.  I think being involved with homework shows your child that it is a priority in their mom’s life.  Our children see how we endure endless tasks we have to complete and they can sense what is the most important.  So for a parent to take the time to check homework or study with a child sends a significant signal to that child that school is very important.

Being involved with your child’s learning, I believe is essential.  Another aspect of making your child’s education be a priority to you is becoming involved with your child’s school.  I know that this is not very easy for working moms.  However, I know many working moms who manage to volunteer their time at school.  Some of the working moms I know have lunch with their child at least once a month.  A great many plan ahead and go on field trips with their children.  Even if you are unable to be at the school during the day due to the nature of your work, you can get involved in the evenings with different organizations, PTA, Parent Teacher Association, or other committees that will keep you updated on the school’s progress.  When you talk to your child about current events at school it makes your child feel that school must be important if you know about it.

Growing up in my home school was our job.  Dad had the bank, Mom raised us and we worked at school.  When I got older I asked my parents if I could get a job that would pay money.  They said “The only way you will be allowed to work is if you keep A’s and B’s at school”.  School was much more important than any part time job I might hold.  At that time I was 15 years old and had a C on my report card and I pulled it up to a B and started my first job babysitting and cleaning house.  My parents instilled the value of education in my mind when I was very young.

How much more will your child try to achieve if he/she knows this it is a way for you to notice them more.  If school is a common ground that you hold vital.  As a mom I think making education a top priority to your child is priceless.  Children look to us to set the example.  Yes, when they get a little older 8 or 9 they start to look at what their friends are doing.  So consider making it valuable before they become 8 or 9 and they go along with a crowd mentality that school doesn’t matter.

I have been reading the book of proverbs in the New American Catholic  Bible and find it very inspiring.  In the beginning it explains that the need for knowledge will help you to know God.  Our children, the children here in America and many other developed countries have opportunities that children in war torn countries could not even imagine.  Let us appreciate the education they are being given. We sometimes look at our children’s school as not doing the right things all the time.  We need to give thanks that our children have schools!  We need to give thanks to the teachers that they have followed a calling to be a teacher.  It is not the easiest occupation and they are not paid what they are worth.  These teachers are helping to raise our children with the knowledge and social skills they will need to succeed in life.  God gives us, as moms, the responsibility to raise our children with values and knowledge and if teachers are willing to help then we need to meet them at least half way.

Think about the following questions for a few minutes:

  •  What do you think education will do for your child? 
  • Do you think it will eventually lead to a good job so that he/she can provide for a family? 
  • Do you think it will help your child to socially fit into the standards of our world? 
  •  Do you think education will not only provide for a future for your child but also the knowledge to know themselves well enough to become what God wants them to become?
  •   Is education a priority to you? 
  • Should you be doing anything  different or are you already involved? 

 Your example sets the stage for what your child will hold dear in his/her life.  Make sure that you are giving them the example true to what you believe.  What you say rings in your child’s ears for a long time but what you do or do not do will be etched into the person they become.  Is how you regard your child’s education being supported by your words and actions?  If not change it for the sake of your child… 









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