Congratulations! You have made it to the end of the 2020 school year. You are all to be commended for your outstanding parenting, patience and support shown to your daughters! For the last edition of Counsellor’s Couch for 2020, we will be looking at the parent/daughter “Report-Card Chat”. This week, you will be receiving your daughters school reports, some girls will be nervous for their parents to receive their results and others will be most excited. Educational Psychologist, Wendy Maitin-Casalis (based in Hilton), gives some great advice in her article entitled “Parent Tips for the Report-Card Chat.”
“As the end of the school year approaches, so does it come time to discuss final grades. It’s been a roller coaster of a year and students and parents alike might feel stressed and worried, especially if poor grades are a concern. By sitting down together, celebrating the positives, and making a plan to improve poor grades in the year ahead, you can reduce report-card related stress and have a chat that everyone can feel good about.
Here are five helpful tips for having a family discussion about your daughter’s school report:
SCHEDULE THE DISCUSSION
Instead of casually discussing grades on a short car ride to the shops, or when you’re getting ready to head to work, sit down together and make sure you have a decent amount of time to fully discuss the year and each subject/grade.
HIGHLIGHT THE POSITIVES
No matter what grades show up on the end-of-year report card, there WILL be something positive. A compliment in the teacher comments, a grade that’s higher than last year’s, a pass in a difficult subject, etc.
Parents and children are in this together. Listen to each other and recognise that you both want the same thing: school success! Recognise the struggle, listen to thoughts, comments, worries, complaints. Be empathetic.
END WITH A PLAN
Before your report-card discussion ends, come up with a plan together on how you will make next year better than this year.
MARK THE MILESTONES
Another school year has passed and a LOT has been accomplished. Report-card aside, your child has learned a lot this school year and had to adapt to some unexpected circumstances, and that alone is a reason to celebrate! Whether it’s monetary rewards for high grades, or a simple trip to get ice cream, marking the milestone of another grade over is a great way to recognise achievement at every stage.”
I hope that you have a restful holiday (with lots of family time) and a blessed Christmas. I will be back in 2021 for some more great “Counsellors Couch” topics.
Mrs Sarah O’Connell (St John’s D.S.G. School Counselling Psychologist)