Let me tell you how amazing God is and how he will work on the inside of you without you even being in a place to recognize what is going on. I say that to say, it took for me to decide to invest in a career (teaching) that I always said wasn’t for me but would benefit my family, absolutely hating it and then having it taken away (contract not renewed) for me to truly find my passion. I had lost my job that I HATED and was initially devastated because I have a family to provide for but then realized that it was nothing more than a blessing in disguise. I was on a search for happiness that could only come from me and although I would have continued to teach and hating it because in my mind this was just a part of the process, God had other plans for me.
On this new journey I was on, I found that there was a deep passion for parent engagement and its effect on children and caregivers buried on the inside of me. I spent most days doing arts and crafts and/or some other educational activities with the girls, listening to music and writing in addition to a million other motherly duties! As I shifted the way I connected with my children based on their age and current interests, and shared my experiences with my family and friends on social media, I realized what I was doing with my own kids wasn't the norm for most parents for different reasons. During this time, I also accepted a position as a Family Service Coordinator, where I worked in a title I school and provided parent workshops and family events to encourage parents and caregivers to play a more active role in their child's education as well as build and strengthen positive relationships among all stakeholders including but not limited to parents/caregivers, teachers, administrators, and community members. Look how God works!
Being in this position gave me an opportunity to share my experiences, share research on the benefits of parent engagement as well as a variety of resources and hands-on activities to help facilitate more educational based parent/child interactions at home. As I reflected on my own experiences, I realized that I have been doing a damn good job and had to pat myself on the back!! Lol. I don’t say this to brag but I have learned that there are so many different ways to be engaged in your child’s education that doesn’t require attending every school event or assisting in the classroom. It is important for both parents and students to understand the connections between school and home. Additionally, children succeed the most when teachers and parents/caregivers have a positive and trusting relationship.
One thing I have always done since my oldest daughter was in head start was build and maintain a positive relationship with any of her teachers. My kids are clear that whether good or bad, I am going to know what happens at school and it will affect what happens at home. Needless to say, I don’t deal with many behavior issues. BUT…..I can even threaten my kids at home using their teacher!!! What?? I’m telling you...it works! They don’t want their teacher to know they over here testing all my patience and not being very kind so they rethink their whole lives and get it together. Now if that’s not relationship goals...IDK. Come back and check us out for parent engagement tips and resources!