5 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Be A Helicopter Parent (To Your Child And The Teacher)

5 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Be A Helicopter Parent (To Your Child And The Teacher)

This is the time of the year when many kids are going back to school, and preschoolers are getting ready for their first big day.  It is a day filled with anticipation, anxiety, and joy.  It is also a time when we, as parents, shed many bittersweet tears.  No matter what grade your child is going into, it is a new year, and another year forward.  I still cry on the first day, I just can't help it.

Bigger changes, more responsibilities and letting go inch by inch can be overwhelming for everyone (even the teacher).

However, there are reasons why parents must let their kids jump forward at this time (while they keep a quiet eye out, as they should and always do).  This doesn't mean going against gut feelings (never do that), simply understand that your child needs to grow in school, with their friends, and gain social skills that parents cannot teach, as these skills only come with life experience.

1.  Independence:  You are the epitome of strength and independence.  Independence is the biggest gift we can give our children.  Taking care of their every single whim does not encourage independence.  They must feel a sense of belonging at school, which is separate and independent from home.  Let them have this time of growth, while always being available when they need you.

2.  Trust:  When we don't hover over our kids, we are sending them a message of trust.  We stand back and watch them grow.  We hold their hands when we should.  However, we must give them room to earn our trust.  By giving them the space they need, a new relationship will develop.  Yes, you will learn to trust your child, and they will learn to trust you.

3. Reality:  The fact is that teaching your children that mommy and daddy will be there every waking moment is truly a disservice to their growth and development.  Your child needs to realize that there is a world out there that will not require parents to attend (i.e., career, going to college, etc.).  If they are not given a dose of reality now, they will be in great shock when it is time to come out of their shell.  Always nurture, but teach them that the world doesn't always require the entire family to attend.

4. Stress:  If parents are hovering over their kids in regard to academics, please, think twice.  This generation has enough stress and high-level expectations.  Parents who throw money at their kids by putting them into tons of  unnecessary classes are wasting time and growth.  Students do not have to be the best, or get the best grades.  Let them be kids.  As long as parents provide a stable loving home, the kids will turn out fine.

5.  Annoying:  Parents who are constantly in their child's classroom are simply annoying (I don't mean for special events and such...I mean all the time, sorry, I had to say it).  Teachers feel stressed out when parents are pushing their way in all of the time.  Please, let your child's teacher teach (and breathe)!


Image Credit:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/jsnare/261912966/sizes/l/



Filed under: Student Needs

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    Robyn Shulman

    Robyn is currently the Creative Director at Dreams for Kids. She is a certified elementary teacher and ESL teacher in Illinois, who has taught 4th-6th grade, middle school ESL, and ESL to adults. She specializes in the fields of writing, ESL, technology and higher education. She is an academic and career professional advisor for the state of Illinois, the Managing Editor of ED News Daily, and a blogger for Chicago Now. She has been published and/or profiled on Linkedin Today, Edudemic, Reading Horizons, BG Patch, fhytimes, Edutopia, Elmer's Glue, Xavier University News and more. Robyn was recently featured on Linkedin's corporate blog: An Unexpected Journey: 10 Ways Linkedin Changed My Life In One Year. Humbled and honored, she was also interviewed by Xavier University, discussing her life's dedication and work in the field of education, as part of their "American Dream Project," the only collection of American dreamers to date. In addition to her passion for writing, she also has a great love of higher education. She launched and managed the first graduate advising program for National Louis University, supporting over 2,500 teachers. She holds a B.A. in Elementary Education and an M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, with a concentration in ESL.

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