Education Matters—Sanford School's Private School Blog

Suzanne Humphreys, M.A.

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Suzanne Humphreys is the Guidance Counselor and Learning Services Coordinator of Sanford School's Lower School.

Recent Posts

How to Help Your Child with Homework

Posted by Suzanne Humphreys, M.A. on September 22, 2017 at 11:30 AM

 Who likes to do homework? We all have work that we need to take home in different forms, but it helps us to prepare for our next day, week, or month. Most students have nightly work, preparations for projects or tests, which is designed to prepare children with the necessary skills to succeed at various levels of educational development. Daily homework should reinforce skills learned in the classroom and preparing for tests/projects should require time to plan and work.

Each student is a unique individual, and how and when he or she works needs to be specific to them. What may work for your first child may not work best for your second child. Plan, plan, plan and be sure to have a good home-and-school partnership to ensure success for each of your children.

Here are a few quick tips on how parents can help with homework:

  • Provide a quiet, distraction free work area such as a desk or table with good lighting and no distractions.
  • Routine time to work—it’s a good idea to schedule a similar time each day to do work so each child gets into a routine.
  • Help your child create a homework plan each night—if you know that one night is busier than others, help your student plan out how to get the work completed and/or work ahead for the next busy night. A visual calendar helps with this organization skill.
  • Parent-teacher partnership—know the expectations of your child's teachers so you can help reinforce those expectations at home.
  • Have the student do his or her own work—let’s face it, you’ve already completed the grade your child is currently enrolled in, so it is his or her turn to learn and do the work on their own.
  • Role modelif your child is working, you can be working too. You can be prepping for dinner, balancing your checkbook or completing any other adult work you may have.  This sets a great example of good work ethic for your child.
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Topics: Education, Academics

Is My Child Ready For Kindergarten?

Posted by Suzanne Humphreys, M.A. on February 16, 2016 at 3:00 PM

As we all know, school readiness is an important topic. As that fifth birthday approaches, almost every parent wonders if their child is ready for kindergarten or if they would benefit long-term from another year of preschool. If only crystal balls were real! We can look at a child’s date of birth or their gender, but that is not enough.

It’s tempting to focus on how a child is progressing with academic basics: 

  • recognizing letters and numbers
  • understanding that letters are associated with sounds
  • understanding that numbers represent quantities
  • knowing and manipulating shapes
  • identifying colors 

A child who excels in these areas still may not be ready for all the challenges of a kindergarten classroom. Similarly, the child who mixes up some letters may show plenty of signs of being ready to succeed in kindergarten.

How is a parent to know what to do? 

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Topics: Education