My Quest To Teach

August 30, 2014

Back To School Suggestions for Parents

Back To School Suggestions for Parents

These were ideas I presented at my church Westside Church of Christ
Back to School Event.

Hope they are helpful to you and if you would like please share.

1. Encourage reading every day in your children
2. Make math a part of the day by counting, adding, subtracting,
dividing and multiplying any and everything.
3. Teach your children the importance of listening and
following directions.
4. Support your child’s teacher’s rules for the classroom and review
them with your child or children. This shows unity in education.
5. Make sure each day your child is ready for school and prepared.

6. Encourage responsibility and ownership for learning by your
children or child.
7. Ask your child about school when they come home, talk to them
not at them. Give them opportunities to share.
8. Attend Open House and School Board Meetings this empowers
you with information and encourages positive and proactive action.
9. Join the PTA / PTO and SAC School Advisory Committee so you have
a say in what goes on at your child / children school.
10. Talk with teachers not at them; get their email address and classroom
phone numbers to keep communication open and positive.

11. Talk with administrators; get to know their names and titles.
12. Don’t be scared to ask questions there is no such thing as a dumb question.
You have a right as a parent to get all your answers to any and all questions.
13. Meet the guidance counselors so they can help plan for continued success
and potential learning challenges.
14. Register as a volunteer, chaperone or reader at the school. Even if you
work register so you can be available later in the school year.
15. Check book bags and backpacks for agendas, folders and planners.
Do not wait until the morning to check them. Be sure to sign agendas
the day before.

16. Consider the source when you talk to your kids, ask leading questions
and verify information. Do not assume anything from your kids.
17. Set time aside for home reading. Reading is the foundation for success.
18. Check homework completion, even if you do not know how to do it
check to make sure your child attempts it and tries their best.
19. Check online resources for help. Go to the schools web site for
information about homework help, tutoring and other assistance.
20. Get Bus Route information if your child rides the bus.

21. Attend OPEN HOUSE…….
22. Schedule a Parent / Teacher meeting before October.
23. Talk to your child and children about careers other than entertainment
or sports.
24. If parents are divorced or separated communication is still important,
keep the lines of communication open and positive. It is not about you
it is about your children.
25. Take your children to the museums, libraries and cultural centers
during the school year. Learning takes place outside of the classroom
as well.

Volunteering Dads

August 28, 2014

Fathers Help Your Child in School

Filed under: Education,Parenting — William Jackson @ 7:25 pm

Fathers Help Your Child in School

The IDEAL Dads Back to
School Conference success was
seen in its first conference
in Jacksonville, Florida.
Inviting dads to the free
conference and providing breakfast, free
materials in books and other school materials for dads to
provide for their children. The conference focused on
empowering dads with information and resources.

The discussions were geared to helping dads see that they
are important in the educational system and schools can
gain more success if they (schools) embraced and encouraged
dads to be part of the educational process.
Fathers taking their child to school on the very first day and
continuing to participate throughout the school year is important,
that was shared by William Jackson a 25 year educator in elementary
and higher education. The information shared helped dads to
understand their importance of fathering in their children’s lives.

Fathers should be encouraging growth of their children and stay
actively involved. Fathers can create a paradigm shift in the
educational atmosphere that can lead to higher graduation
rates, lower dropout rates, decrease pregnancies and decrease
school violence. One of the important responsibilities fathers are
tasked with; the education of their children.
Education is not just in the educational systems of our classrooms,
but the education of life and social skills.

The vison of Lynette Kohn IDEAL DADS!
Back to School Conference
Celebrating Dads was planned just for
dads, granddads, stepdads,
and men to help their children.

“To educate a man (woman) in mind and not in morals is to educate
a menace to society.” Theodore Roosevelt

Fatherhood is a responsibility of unending change and dedication,
the initial thought is that fathers have to be hard and emotionless; this is false as to being a father. Why would you
be hard to a human being that as a father you have to nurture, teach, guide, mentor, show compassion, strength, teach respect
and teach how to love themselves, their culture and others.
Fathering is a short time and changes with the fast
approaching years. Children mature and pull away from the
closeness and security of homes. The evolution of the family
shows that there are more fathers that are step-fathers,
surrogate fathers, adopted fathers, and “oops” fathers.
Even “oops” fathers should be given the chance to be
actively involved and contribute.

The recent IDEAL DADS – Back to School Conference showed fathers
need to be involved, active and present in schools. Fathers do have
rights and are / can be held accountable for their children’s actions.
The conference workshops were:
7 Habits of Highly Effective Families by Dr. Walter Johnson,
Financial Management by Iris Jones of BBandT Bank
Communication Strategies by Earl Kitchings
Social Media Safety and School Engagement by William Jackson

This school year more than ever
because of the increased challenged
schools fathers are going to have to;
Man-Up, Step-Up, Own-Up, and
Fess-Up to their responsibilities and
participate more in schools.
It is not enough to attend athletic events, provide pep talks, promise material rewards or even setting almost unachievable
goals. Fathers must be visible and involved in schools to stop growing academic failures and work to stop increasing school violence and even the School to Prison Pipeline that is incarcerating thousands of youth both boys and girls.
Being a father includes making decisions not just for
themselves, for the child or children in their lives,
sacrificing for their families and strengthening their

Children are born into the world that requires fathers to
review their accountability and responsibly. Child rearing
is never an easy thing in life, fathers must understand that
the world is changing and their children need them to be active
and involved. Even President Obama understands his importance
in the lives of his daughters. The responsibilities of this
nation and the world maybe on his shoulders at times, but his children are on his mind and his heart. His decisions affect
their lives as well.

Ozzie Nelson, “Ozzie & Harriet”
“You can’t let yourself get flustered.
The idea is keep your wits about you at
all times. Keep your mind on what you’re
doing.” The tragedy of Trayvon Martin,
Jordan Davis, Renisha McBride and others
is drawing national attention.
Fathers need to have discussions, conversations and honest engagement to teach their sons and daughters how to survive
in a world that seems not to value their lives. It can be
seen in some cases in schools which are representative of
society, fathers cannot be selfish in their actions and
choices because they are models to their children and
children see their fathers as idols and role models.
A father must provide wisdom and guidance, by sharing how
important education is, that there is value in learning,
reading is vital to survival.

Fathers need to show up at schools and speak with teachers, administrators, coaches and tutors to make sure their child
or children are learning and not being a disruption to the
learning in classrooms or on school campuses. Fathers must
be diligent and consistent in their nurturing and consider
their actions when speaking. Children will follow in deeds
and actions so fathers cannot say one thing and do something
else. The Bible states in Hosea 4:6 (NKJ), “My people are
destroyed from lack of knowledge.” This can be extended
to children unsupported, unguided, and lead astray.

Fathers must show good judgment openly
to their children and in their communities.
It is up to fathers to show that life does
not have to be violent, thuggish, angry,
hard or lonely. A true man does not make
dozens of babies by multiple women and then
leave them in poverty. Real
fathers do not let entertainment icons, rappers,
musicians, and television raise their children and set morals
and values. As Charles Barkley (professional basketball
athlete) once said that parents should be their children’s
first role models not television.
How different would our society be if fathers were as
enthusiastic with children as the enthusiasm for sports
or other recreational outlets?

Cliff Huxtable, “The Cosby Show”
“Now I’m telling you, you are going to try as hard
as you can. And you’re going to do it because I said so.
I am your father. I brought you into this world, and
I’ll take you out!”

Events like the IDEAL DADS Conference should help
motivate dads to be the best they can be for their
children. The First Day of school should be the start,
a standard to multiple days throughout the school year
of visits, mentoring and support.
Proverbs 22:6 (NKJ), “Train a child in the way they
should go, and when they are old they will not turn from
it.” The unfortunate reality is too many children are
being lead into the juvenile justice system where they
lose their identities and treated like human capital
with more value imprisoned and less on their education.

This is a defining moment in our
society from education to incarceration,
from legislation to enforcement and
now from murder to justice for this nation.
There are two institutions that desire
children, Educational and Correctional,
it will take the hard work of all fathers
to make sure their children choose wisely, but fathers
must be activity involved to help their
children make the right decision.

Malcolm X stated, “Education is our passport to the
future, for tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare
for it today.” Our children’s lives are balanced on
their parent’s involvement, love, care and dedication. As
millions of youth head back to school their parents should
be there beside them, supporting them and cheering them
on to academic and societal success. If parents don’t want
to take care of their children the prisons
and graveyards of this nation have plenty of room
for them.

William Jackson, M.Ed.
Edward Waters College
Speaker / Presenter
Educator / Blogger

IDEAL DADS! Back to School Conference
Celebrating Dads in Jacksonville, Florida
Next Event for IDEAL Dads will be on
Saturday, November 15th 2014
9am to 12pm
Hilton Garden Inn – 1201 Kings Avenue
Jacksonville, Florida 32207
For more information contact:
Lynette Kohn – – CEO, Family for Life
William Jackson – – CVO,
My Quest To Teach

August 17, 2014

Parents What Are Your Expectations for Your Child

Filed under: Uncategorized — William Jackson @ 8:24 am


Parents What Are Your Expectations for Your Child
A New School Year – A New Focus for Success

The new school year draws close, parents are concerned about
the outward appearance of their children; rightly so, children
represent their respective families and generational lineage
(family history).

No parent wants their children to look scruffy especially the
first several weeks of school. The concerns of parents in their
dressing of their child or children is a representation of the
physical appearance that creates the initial impressions that
are temporary and quickly fleeting during the school year.

The question:
Parents What Are Your Expectations for Your Child
is thought provoking and a serious discussion that inquires
parents preparing their children academically for success in school
are socially responsible. Parents have you encouraged academic
excellence using positive words and positive expectations?
Parents have you purchased educational materials; dictionaries,
reference guides, educational DVD’s, obtained library cards and
museum memberships? Learning occurs outside of the school too.
Parents are you talking too, not yelling at children about your
high expectations for proper behavior and scholarly participation
(being a good student)? Parents need to show that books are the
gateways to new worlds and new discoveries. Chinua Achebe,
Nigerian author states, “Children should be fascinated by book
and encouraged to read every day.”

I have heard in previous years parents verbally threaten, demean,
dress down, embarrass and curse out their children as the school year
approached. Parent’s excuses or reasons; children need to know
that they (parents) mean business. Comments such as these shape
and mold a child’s mind. It potentially creates a personality that the
perception is they deserve to be beat, they deserve to be yelled at
and cursed at. These actions only reinforce in a child’s mind that
violence should be accepted and maybe even welcomed in order
to be a good student. This is a false and dangerous mentality.
Children should be taught that, “there is value in books and libraries,”
(African Voices 2009 – C.Achebe)

As a parent and educator, I urge parents to think about and seriously
consider two statements by two well-known men. Both were parents and
known globally for their wisdom in their respective lives. Both went
through changes in their lives as parents.
Albert Einstein (1879-19550 stated, ”Way of thinking should be taught to
all children, to be tenacious in the way they think, to solve problems even
though they may take years.” Einstein 2007 This is related to the patience of
learning, to the expectations of hard work and dedication to research.
It is important for parents to teach this to their children not through profanity,
but through love, role modeling and patience.

Malcolm X (1925-1965) stated simply, “Education is the passport to the future.
Tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.” Malcolm X promoted
learning and understanding. He is known to read feverously and regularly
sharing his knowledge when applying it to Blacks and people of color.
Even Whites in some cases when directed towards education shared Malcolm X
views on the importance of education on a global foundation for influence.
It is a parent’s responsibility to help TRAIN a child’s mind not to beat it and
curse it into submission. The Bible and other religious doctrine states to
train up a child as they should go and helps in showing the value in education,
that nations should embrace learning and understanding so others can follow.
Deuteronomy 4:6 – show your wisdom and understanding to the nations, who
will hear about all these decrees and say, “Surely this great nation is a wise
and understanding people.”

Einstein stated that, “The value of education is the training of the mind
to think.” What a profound statement from a man from humble beginnings.
He faced prejudice, racism and death threats because of his Jewish heritage,
living in the time of Nazi Germany. Einstein became a successful professor,
scholar, and Nobel Peace Prize winner for the theory of Relativity and other
discoveries and research.
This did not happen overnight it took years of dedication, collaboration,
training and discipline. This being said, parents prepare your children for
potential careers. Read to you children, provide positive educational
experiences and expose them to positive people that will lead them in the
right direction of success. Parents should be their child’s First teacher
before they enter school. A foundation of success should already
be created and high expectations established.

Parents must train up their children the way they should properly go,
valuing education and those who are progressive, educated and doing good
works in their community. Parents should ask themselves who would
they want their child to follow; who would they want their children to
be like, who should be their role models beyond athletes and entertainers.
Children absorb up their environmental residue, if you constantly beat a
child physically and verbally something will break and shatter. Too
many children are becoming broken, this is seen painfully through the
comments from students that they can’t do math, science is too hard,
reading is not understood and comprehension is not gained. Students are
closing their minds because they are scared or defiant to be challenged,
scared to learn worried about being wrong and scared to be recognized
as being intellectual in their learning skills.
Low proficiency in reading is associated with high school dropouts,
criminal behaviors, unemployment and contributes to poverty. It has
a direct effect on the School to Prison Pipeline.

Teachers are preparing their classrooms to encourage. To encourage
learning, build literacy and increase comprehension skills. Creating
foundational levels for higher order, critical thinking and rationalization
skills. Parents need to be the first model for educational value, parents
think about the kind of child or children you are raising and what are
your expectations for them. Do you want your children to be better than
you in life: do you want them to be better financially, educationally,
and socially?

Parents hold the keys….
The keys are engagement in listening, involvement in volunteering,
attending Open House, participating in PTA and even going to School
Board meetings. Being proactive in scheduling Parent / Teacher
conferences. Establishing high expectations for success and talking to
children. The keys are working with educators and administrators,
supporting Early Education and understanding rituals and routines.
Continuing an atmosphere of healthy learning at home, being a role
model and doing not just saying.
The key is reading to and with your child or children every day if
Parents, think about what type of child/children are you raising for
the future. Albert Einstein encouraged curiosity. Believing there is a
purpose for curiosity and exploration in all of us no matter our color
or culture. Education overcomes cultural divides, economic challenges,
societal diversity and inspires unity.

Parents should teach their children to embrace learning, enjoy learning and
create learning environments in their homes.

“The ceasing of the School to Prison Pipeline starts at HOME, parents YOU
create THE atmosphere of educational imprisonment or educational

William Jackson
Parent – Educator – Blogger

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