3.) Parents of school athletes: No coaching during games. I've seen too many parents, mostly dads, turn their kids off of the immensely rewarding participation in school athletics by giving them advice during the game. Knock it off. Not only are you annoying your athlete, you may also be giving advice contradictory to what the coach is saying.
4.) Turn off the $% television. Or the computer, or the cell phone. There is a pile of evidence showing just how bad TV is for kids and a new study shows it may even take years off your life. More than that, your children will usually mirror your activities, so think about what you want them to see you doing when they are home. (Hint: Reading is a key to success in school.)
5.) Use a carrot and stick. Reward the completion of homework with time spent doing something pleasurable. This approach will pay dividends for a lifetime as they learn the benefits of delayed gratification and adjust to the adult working model where benefits and advancement come after hard work, not before.
6.) Find your child's sweet spot. Every child is good at something. Discover it and nurture it. And if your child's area of expertise cannot be developed by the additional years of college, do not for one moment consider this a failure. Anyone reading this has more appreciation for the plumber at midnight than the egghead at noon.
7.) Speak up. There is no way the school board can know what you're thinking unless you tell it. And trustees will act — sometimes. Recently, they started an online registration test and created a new web page for local veterans, all of which originated with community input.