As we send our children to school we trust learning is taking place, and it is. But how do we know?
The conversations we have with our children are imperative to building partnerships between school and home, and connecting in with our children on this shows them that education is to be valued.
Often, the question we ask at the end of the school day, when our children jump in the car or walk though the front door is ‘What did you do today?’, and yes it’s important we engage with what they did, but so to is it important to find out what was learnt. We need to build an environment that shows school is about learning.
So, as parents and careers, how can be sure we promote an environment where learning is celebrated, encouraged and supported?
Well, there are some questions you can ask to help your children engage, connect with and reflect upon the learning that has happened each day.
- What did you learn today?
This will have your children reflect on the learning that took place, not just the activities they did.
- What challenged you today?
Learning is supposed to be challenging. Learning is not always easy. By asking this question we are letting our children know that learning requires some challenging thinking, feeling uncomfortable and not always getting it right, and that feeling like this is OK. This can also be a great time to ask about the mistakes that were made, as mistakes mean learning is happening.
- What do you still need to learn or what do you need to learn next?
This question will promote reflection and that learning never ends. Learning is an ongoing process. It’s not just about getting the answer right. This is essential for children to understand and develop a sense of life long learning and to get excited about continually learning.
So instead of asking ‘What did you do at school today?’, try asking these questions instead.
Note: if these are new questions for your children, they may be a bit tricky to answer straight away as it’s a new way of thinking. Give it time for your child to think and make sure they know you’ll be asking these questions again tomorrow. That way when they are at school they will be tuned in to finding you an answer for when you ask them these questions at the end of the day.
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