Helping your child

In the Foundation and Primary years, parental involvement has a huge impact on children’s cognitive development and literacy and number skills.  Research tells us that parental involvement in a child’s schooling for a child between the ages of 7 and 16 is a more powerful force than family background, size of family and level of parental education.  Whereas educational failure is increased by lack of parental interest. 

So what can you do? 

First of all, take a look at the video below to see how choices made in childhood can have far reaching effects (be warned it’s quite hardhitting).

Then have a look at the ideas below.



As the video suggests, research shows that the most important thing you can do to help your child achieve at school is read with them. Little and often is the key!

There are three things that your child needs to learn to do:

1) Decode words
2) Understand what they have read
3) Enjoy it!

Reading with your child should be enjoyable. The more fun you have, the more likely you are to give them a love of reading. Talk with your child when reading with them. They will probably ask you some interesting questions, so don’t be afraid to stop reading and explore these further.

If your child doesn’t enjoy reading, then the following might tempt them:

– Listen to audiobooks to get them interested in stories
– Show them that you love reading too. Visit the library together and choose some books for you and for them.
– Go for something that you know will interest your child. Perhaps they are really into wildlife, so a non-fiction book may be a good place to start.
– Ensure your child can easily access books in your home. Have shelves at child height and books in each room.

The Oxford Owl website has 250 free, tablet-friendly e-books for you to access at home. You can access the website here.