As parents, we are the first educators of our children.
We know that when we’re more connected to our children, by supporting their learning and their wellbeing, everyone benefits.
Decades of research has shown that parents who take an active interest in their child’s education help improve their learning, lift their self-esteem and instil in them a positive attitude towards school.
The Queensland Independent Schools Parents Network (QIS Parents Network) has drawn together important local, national and international research on parent engagement as well as advice on how to connect the dots between home and school.
Every family is different. Therefore, it’s important that you take away what works for you, your child and your family’s circumstances.
What is Parent Engagement?
Parent engagement is about positively supporting your child’s learning at school. Parents who are interested in what their child is doing in class, who reinforce and connect what they’re learning inside the school gate to their home life, and who value the importance of education, can have a profound influence on their child’s achievements and social and emotional wellbeing | LEARN MORE
How You Can Support Your Child’s Learning
Learning Potential Resources | A one-stop shop with a wealth of practical resources and activities, developed by the Australian Government, to hep parents of children from kindergarten age to Year 6, connect school learning with life at home. There’s also a Learning Potential app for parents on the go.
Engaging With Your Child’s Learning | This web page, prepared by the Queensland Department of Education, provides a range of resources to support parents of children in primary and high school.
School A to Z | A website containing a wide range of articles and advice for parents, from the New South Wales Education Department, about how they can support their children at school, from helping children with phonics, to understanding the pressures they’ll face in the senior years of school.
Five from Five | An initiative of the Centre for Independent Studies, Five from Five aims to improve literacy levels. It has a range of evidence-based resources, tips on reading and activities for parents to do with their children.
ABC Short & Curly | A podcast designed to get children and families thinking and brainstorming together.
According to the ABC, Short & Curly is a “fast-paced fun-filled ethics podcast for kids and their parents, with questions and ideas to really get you thinking. It asks curly questions about animals, technology, school, pop culture and the future”.
One of the latest episodes proposes the following scenario: “An out-of-control train is heading straight for a group of people who don’t know they are about to be hit. You, as the driver, have some life and death decisions to make. What will you do?”
ABC Education | An extensive range of free educational resources for primary and secondary students, including videos, games, apps and articles.
Curious Kids | A series for children by The Conversation, an independent source of news and views from Australia’s academic and research community. Children can send in any question they’d like an expert to answer. Questions experts have answered for children have included: ‘where do flies sleep?’ and ‘is x-ray vision possible?’.
Nature Play | Dedicated to getting children outdoors, Nature Play provides parents with current events, activities and ideas on how to engage their children in fun, inspiring and engaging outdoor play.
Kids News | A news service, by News Corp, that publishes news stories of interest to Australian children at a level they can understand and relate to. At the end of each story is a range of learning activities parents can do with their children.
Reading Rockets | A US-based website, but it has a comprehensive range of resources, ideas and support to help parents “grow readers”.
How You Can Support Your Child’s Wellbeing
Be You | A new website that details a national school-based approach to supporting children’s and young people’s mental health in early learning services and schools, from early years to 18. It includes modules, fact sheets and support for educators that parents will also find helpful.
Student Wellbeing Hub | A central point where parents can access advice about important topics and resources to help make their child’s school experience a positive one.
Headspace | A national mental health foundation that provides support for young people and families to work through life’s challenges.
Qld Family & Child Commission | a government agency that promotes the safety, wellbeing and best interests of children and young people; promotes and advocates the responsibility of families and communities to protect and care for children and young people; and improves the child protection system.
Raising Children Network | an Australian Government-supported parenting website that provides families with tips and advice on every possible parenting issue, or childhood health, education or wellbeing concern.
Parentline | a confidential and free telephone counselling support service for Queensland parents.
Kids Helpline | a free, private and confidential 24/7 phone and online counselling service for young people aged 5 to 25.
Lifeline | a 24/7 crisis support and suicide prevention service provider.
Beyond Blue | a national organisation the provides information about, and support for, depression, anxiety and suicide prevention.
ReachOut | a national online mental health organisation for young people and their parents that provides practical support, tools and tips to help young people respond to life’s challenges and provides parents with knowledge and strategies to support their children.
Triple P (Positive Parenting Programs) | Queensland parents can access free parenting seminars and online courses to help them navigate and respond to every day and more complex family issues and child behaviours.
Smiling Mind | a not-for-profit organisation that works to make mindfulness accessible to all Australians via a free app, face-to-face workshops and resources that can be used by both teachers and employers.
Cool Kids and Chilled Out Online Parenting Courses | Evidence-based skills-based online program for parents of young children and teens that equips them with strategies and skills to help children manage anxiety.
Office of the eSafety Commissioner | a national organisation that works to make all Australians have safe, positive experiences online. It is also responsible for providing: a complaints service for young Australians who experience serious cyberbullying; identifying and removing illegal online content; and tackling image-based abuse.
Think You Know | a national program led by the Australian Federal Police to educate children and young people about issues such as sexting, cyber bullying, online child exploitation, online privacy, and what to do when something goes wrong. Presentations are aimed at parents, carers and teachers and young people from Kindergarten to Grade 12.
Bullying No Way | A national day of action where school communities stand up against all forms of bullying and violence. The website contains a range of supporting information and advice for students and families.
Healthdirect | a government-funded service that provides quality, approved health information and advice.