Getting to the Nitty Gritty: My Final Tips to Acton Parents

My final four tips delve into the daily life of a thriving Acton Academy parent.

Each one will answer this oft-asked question:

What is the role of a parent if the children are supposed to be independent learners? 

Our goal is for all parents to have a healthy involvement in their child’s learning.

This means finding the sweet spot directly between “hovering then swooping to fix” and “hands off, uninformed confusion.”

How to do this is pretty simple and here’s what you need to know:

Tip #16: Follow your child’s work goals each week and ask about them.

Every Monday, your child sets new goals and is given new deadlines.

Every Friday, your child knows exactly what was achieved, how much time was spent on each area of work, and what is the priority for the upcoming week.

All we parents have to do is ask the right questions throughout the week and read our children’s S.M.A.R.T. Goals and Points Tracker. Your Eagles can bring home a copy of their goals; and you’ll be given the password to the online Points Tracker during the first week of school.

Additionally, reading the elementary school and middle school/Launchpad blogs is the best way to stay informed about the topics of learning and work happening each week in your child’s life.

We have found that parents’ stress levels are inversely proportional to their understanding of the work and processes at Acton. It goes like this: lack of understanding about the work at Acton leads to confusion which leads to stress about whether their child is learning and progressing.

Imagine this alternative: diving in regularly with your child on these lifelong questions that matter to them:

What is the level of challenge in your goals this week – high, medium or low? Where do you seek help when you need it – other Eagles, maps or notes hanging in the studio, online, books? What do you do to minimize distractions? What are you most excited about in your work – why?

Here’s the hard part. There will be days that your child is really struggling. And the healthiest involvement is leaning in, being quiet, listening and telling them you trust they can work this out. You sit with them in it, but you let them work it out. This is deep learning time.

Tips 17-20 coming up next week.