PUNCTUALITY IS ‘LEARNED’
I don’t like to be late! Sure, sometimes circumstances are totally beyond one’s control, though my mother always reinforced with me that “to be sure to be on time, you must be early!”
Attendance and punctuality play a huge role in increasing children's academic success. When students are not in class they miss out on a wealth of knowledge as well as continuity of learning. When students miss school for no good reason, they usually lack the motivation to complete the work they missed from being absent. Having children practise punctuality at school is great preparation for their future careers, where showing up at work on time will not only make them dependable, but will also help them earn a living.
Prioritise your child's attendance
Children shouldn’t be kept home to babysit. When parents do this, they make attending school even more difficult, causing the child to complete multiple assignments upon their return and struggle to make sense of what is being taught.
Model presence and punctuality
Your best teaching is done by example, so leaving for work five minutes late tells your child that being punctual is not important. This will affect their children's success and future prospects.
Teach strategies that lead to punctuality
A late bus, misplaced shoes, a crowded bathroom can hold people up but appropriate strategies can be explicitly taught to your children. For example, preparing clothes the night before can save time when a bathroom is shared. Waking up half an hour early allows for extra time to find a lost shoe.
Teach children the appropriate tools to use in order to increase their chances for perfect attendance. Allow natural consequences for absences and tardiness. Take a no-excuses approach with your children when it comes to absences and punctuality. Give your children natural consequences that show them the results of lateness. Consequences prepare your children for the real world, where they really do miss out on learning, opportunities and even wages because they did not show up on time or at all.
Teach your child that good attendance is not something that just happens. It takes planning, preparation and persistence, but it pays off. Ensure that your child will reap the rewards by instilling punctuality. Significant and respected empirical evidence clearly indicates that parents who are tardy raise, in approximately 70% of cases, children who also develop lifelong habits of tardiness.
I should confess that I was “late to the presses” with this contribution to the newsletter!
Peace and Grace