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10 Tips for a Great Elementary Report Card

Before, during and after report card time, the most important thing for parents to do is to keep the lines of communication open with your elementary school children and teachers to create a plan to further your children’s academic success.

When report cards come home, it can be a stressful time for kids and parents. Grades aren’t always the best indicator of your child’s overall academic performance, and talking about a poor grade is a delicate topic.

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Here Are 4 Ways to Approach Report Card Day so It’s as Stress-Free as Possible!

1. Make it a game of high-low!

Ask your kids what they feel is the “high” of their report cards, and let them know you are proud of their hard work. Secondly, ask what they feel is the “low” of their report card and have a discussion about how that grade was earned. Then discuss ways to improve on the “low.”

2. Talk to your kids about their work habits, goals and challenging subjects.

From there, try setting short-term goals for the next quarter and long-term goals for the end of the school year.

3. Stay positive!

Be careful not to overreact to low grades or grades you deem unacceptable. It can be damaging to children’s confidence and have adverse effects of improvement. Find something to praise, even if it is just perfect attendance or a small improvement in a certain area.

4. Have an open dialogue with your children and let them tell you how they think they did.

This gives them an opportunity to be transparent and sets the tone for parents. By talking openly, you can identify the issues and determine the best steps to create solutions.

Remember that a report card is only a snapshot of how your child is performing in school and does not speak to all of their potential. Progress is key, and if you keep that in mind, you will be able to offer the support your child needs to be successful in all of his or her academic endeavors!

Here Are 6 More Elementary School Tips to Keep Progress Going Throughout the Whole Year:

1. Practice math facts to strengthen your child’s memory when you’re with your child, from car rides, to waiting at the doctor’s office.

Your child should be able to automatically add single-digit numbers with sums up to 20 and multiply single-digit numbers by memory.

2. Make it fun.

Look for “math fact” game apps for your smart phone, use flash cards or play board games that involve adding dice. Sylvan Nation has plenty of math resources, including a new augmented reality math game. You can join for FREE to access a ton of math resources!

3. Encourage your child to read every day.

If you have been reading to your child, change roles and have your child read to you. Then, switch who gets to read each night, or trade off chapters! Elementary school kids benefit from practicing reading out loud.

4. Encourage your child to keep a daily journal.

It can be as short and simple as answering: “What’s the best thing that happened to me today?” Journaling with words and pictures is a great way for kids to build confidence with writing. Set a good example and model the behaviors you want from your child. For example, turn off your electronic devices during dinner or family time, or whenever you’re trying to connect. Read a book or write a note or journal entry.

5. Make sure your child’s skills are on track.

Don’t wait for parent-teacher conferences or report cards to discover your child has some skill gaps. It’s much easier to stay on pace with class, rather than chasing after the class to catch up. Request an assessment from your school, or get Sylvan’s insightful Academic Checkup. You’ll learn exactly how your child’s skills compare to national norms and where to focus your energy.

6. Explore supplemental resources to strengthen skills.

Your options range from online skill-building games, to tutoring. Sylvan offers a variety of math, reading and writing programs to help children dramatically improve their skills and confidence. We love helping kids go from, “I hate writing,” to, “Maybe I’ll be a writer some day!” Reach out to your local Sylvan center here.

More Report Card Tips!
Each year of school brings new challenges. Get the tips for your: