The Relationship Between Families and Schools: Environment and Experience
An extremely important influence on a child’s development and school success surrounds experience and exposure within the home environment – at last, a factor directly within parents’ control! Children require a loving and nurturing environment in order to grow and develop to their fullest potential. Research indicates that there is a link between a child’s ability and motivation to learn and the feeling of being loved.10
While it may be a given that parents love their children, not all parents know how best to show this love. Love is demonstrated not in material things such as toys or even food, but rather through human interaction. Give children your time and attention by playing with them and doing things together, but also provide them with appropriate amounts of structure and consistency.
The quality and number of experiences a child has greatly infl uence development and future learning. Through the study of brain development, we know that brain cells become “connected” or “wired” when the child has new experiences. New knowledge is built on old knowledge much like a brick wall. Experience is key, both at home and at school.11
What’s more, research has shown that reading to children plays a significant role in determining readers and nonreaders at the end of first grade. By reading to children often, encouraging imaginative play, conversing with children, and using everyday activities as learning opportunities, parents and teachers alike can make valuable contributions to child progress.12
Environment and Experience You Are Here
Reprinted with permission of the Gesell Institute. Copyright © 2010, Gesell Institute of Human Development. All Rights Reserved.
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