Friday, March 28, 2014

The Importance of Praise From Parents

While it can be easy to focus on your child’s negative behaviors, taking for granted the things he is doing well can have negative consequences on his choices and self-image. By taking time to praise your child, you can encourage a strong parent-child bond as well as foster positive behaviors. Praise does not just need to be verbal, however. Hugs, high-fives and other signs of approval can be just as effective as telling a child that you are proud of him or her.

Praise is a simple yet effective discipline strategy that increases positive behaviors in children. By paying attention to positive behaviors and showing children that you notice when they are behaving, praise can motivate them to improve their behaviors and continue to be compliant.

Praise needs to be genuine, sincere and focused on your child's effort and hard work, not necessarily the outcome. For example, you should praise and encourage your child for going to basketball practice, working hard on their skills and facing new challenges, not just praise them when he/she wins the game.

Though praising your child is a vital part of fostering their confidence and self-esteem, the quality of the praise is more important than the quantity. Avoid praising your children's attributes ("You're so pretty and smart.") and instead focus on their actions ("You worked so hard on that project."). Encourage kids to try new, more difficult activities through praise, rather than rewarding and acknowledging them for the things that come easy.

By being genuine and specific with your praise and encouragement, you can help build your child's self-confidence while teaching him/her about the importance of effort and hard work. Try to eliminate constant negativity in your household and put the focus on all the wonderful, positive things your children are doing instead.

For more interesting information about praise, please go to

Friday, March 21, 2014

HEAD OF SCHOOL CANDIDATE – Dr. Jay Ketterer and his wife, Mrs. Ketterer will be visiting the school on Monday, March 24 and Tuesday, March 25. The agenda for his visits include the following activities. Please take note:
*Monday, March 24                        Teachers’ Q&A                    3:15 to 4:30 p.m. (Library)
*Tuesday, March 25                       Parents’ Q&A                       8:00 to 10:00 a.m. (Library)
*Tuesday, March 25           Lunch with Teachers                    12:00 to 1:20 p.m. (Cafeteria)
*Tuesday, March 25           Student Assembly                         2:00 to 3:00 p.m. (Gym)
We hope our parent community will be able to attend the Q&A session on Tuesday!

AFTER-SCHOOL SPORTS:  The school is reorganizing the After-School Sports Program beginning Tuesday, March 25. The activities will be led and supervised by our PE teachers, Ms. Carol Rodriguez and Mr. Richard Girbal. They will be offered on TuesdayWednesday, and Friday each week, and the cost will continue to be as follows:  
L. 1,000 per month for 2 times a week, or 
L. 1,500 per month for 3 times a week. 

The payment will be made at the Finance Office in the first week of every month.

The school will continue to offer bus transportation following the activities within the main part of Tegucigalpa for all three days, with the following cost: 

L. 100 for 2 times a week, or
L. 150 for 3 times a week.

These payments should also be made at the Finance Office in the first week of every month.

Please note that we will not have the activities on any days when the students are not in school.

If your child has not already been attending the After-School Sports Program, you can still enroll them by informing Ms. Giles, Ms. Carol Rodriguez, or Mr. Richard Girbal (see email addresses below). 

If you have any questions or suggestions for the After-School Sports Program, please contact Ms. Giles (, Ms. Carol Rodriguez ( or Mr. Richard Girbal (

PICTURES FOR THE YEARBOOK – if you would like pictures of your classroom activities to be included in the yearbook please email them to Ms. Karla Soto by Monday, March 31.

END-OF-SCHOOL-DAY PICK UP: We have had several incidents of students not being picked up on time at the end of the school day. This results in a very long day for your child, and it causes us a problem in terms of supervision.

***PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT YOUR CHILD SHOULD BE PICKED UP BY 3:30 P.M. unless s/he is in Choir, Sports, or staying with a teacher for tutoring or detention.

** When picking your child up, please do not park in the yellow-lined areas in front of the Art Room, Computer Lab, Office and pick up area. Our teachers are working hard for dismissal to run smoothly and safely, and your cooperation is much needed.

CHOIR PARENTS:  Choir practice ends at 4:00 p.m. ***If your child is involved in the Choir, s/he should be picked up by 4:15 p.m. at the latest. ***

AFTER-SCHOOL SPORTS:  If your child is involved in the After-School Sports program with Mr. Eric, you need to pick your child up promptly at 5:00 p.m.

For security reasons, we would like for all students and staff to be off the campus by 5:10 p.m. each day.

If you have any questions, please see or contact Ms. Giles.

EARLY CHILDHOOD AND ELEMENTARY READ-A-THON – This is week four of the Early Childhood and Elementary READ – A – THON for grades K-5. Please remind your child(ren) to read as much as they can, and to record their books in the Reading Log that was provided. 

Friday, March 14, 2014

Support Your Child’s Learning Style

Your child is more likely to want to learn if he uses the learning style that feels most natural and makes the most sense—to him or her. Help your child figure out, and use, his/her best learning style.

Does your child learn best by:
Ø  Hearing, such as listening to a talk or a book on tape? If so, he may be an auditory learner.

He enjoys music and hearing stories. He can probably follow oral directions very well. He is comfortable talking. He would probably prefer spelling his words aloud to the teacher to taking a written quiz
Ø  Seeing, such as reading a book or a graph? If so, he may be a visual learner.
He appreciates artwork, movies and the live theater. He can probably follow a map like a pro. He likes to have something written on paper to back up oral lessons. He would probably prefer studying a chart of the times tables to repeating them out loud with the class.
Ø  Doing, such as building a model or preparing a chart? If so, he may be a kinesthetic learner.
He loves to move, making recess and exercise critical parts of his school day. He would much rather participate than sit and watch. He likes using his hands to create things. He is probably much happier during hands-on activities than during the theory lesson that came before.

Auditory Learners
Auditory learners feel motivated and engaged when they can incorporate more listening into schoolwork. Here are good ways to motivate an auditory learner:
• Have your child record himself/herself reading a chapter out loud. Then review by listening to it.
• Use rhymes, songs, and associative words (letters or words that make
            you think of other words) to remember facts. Example: My Very Excellent
Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas to remember Mercury, Venus, Earth,
Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto.
• Have him/her  ask friends and family members to give you an oral quiz or
listen to you recite math facts.
• When assigned to read fiction, suggest that he/she see if a book on tape is
available. Your child can follow along in the book as he/she listens.
• Suggest that he/she “talk himself” through a problem. “Let’s see, multiply
and divide before you add and subtract. So the first thing I need to do is
multiply two times six … .

Visual Learners
Visual learners feel more motivated and engaged when they can incorporate more seeing into their
schoolwork. Here are some ways to motivate a visual learner:
• Help him/her use color wherever possible. Take notes using different colored pens. Write spelling words and key concepts in “rainbow style”—write each word three times, first in red, then in orange, then in blue. Highlight important passages in stand-out tones, such as bright pink.
• When reading a text, suggest that he/she first go through and look at all the pictures, charts, graphs and diagrams in the chapter. Which points are they illustrating? Suggest that he use the illustrations to reinforce what he is reading.
• Help your child make a study wall. Each week, help him/her make a poster of something he needs to learn and post it in that spot. Have your child refer to it often.
• Flashcards are great for visual learners. Suggest that he/she use them for math facts, vocabulary words, anything that needs to be memorized.
• Talk with your child about staying attentive during oral presentations by watching the speaker. If he/she is a visual learner, allowing his/her eyes to drift toward the window or door is a sure way to miss most of what is being said

Kinesthetic Learners
Kinesthetic learners feel more motivated and engaged when they can incorporate more doing into their schoolwork. Try these ideas to motivate a kinesthetic learner:
• Urge your child to combine study breaks with physical activity. Suggest that he/she study for 30 minutes, then go for a short run (about 10 minutes) and then come back to study.

• Encourage your child to do hands-on projects. Kinesthetic learners can shine at science fairs and art shows because they love to create things. Participation in these events can boost your child’s self-esteem, which can in turn boost his motivation. Help him/her with reading comprehension by having him/her tell you about or act out a passage from a book. Be your child’s audience or play a role yourself.

Friday, March 7, 2014


As parents we need to help our children learn to take pleasure in their school successes. Self-satisfaction can be a powerful motivator, the experts said. The best way to motivate children to do well in school is to let them know you value education, help them set attainable goals, and create an atmosphere in the home that is conducive to academic success.

Children are far more likely to succeed in school if they know their parents consider education important. Parents can show their commitment by checking assignments, helping children relate their schoolwork to the real world and attending school functions. Our school websites and teachers'  blogs make it easy for parents to stay on top of assignments, projects and helpful links. If the teacher doesn't post work online, or if you have questions about an assignment, you can ask him or her for clarification in an email or with a phone call.

Parents also can show their support by asking to see graded homework papers and tests, and offering to go over materials with their children. It's a good idea to regularly review your student's assignment notebook and homework.

Once you know what your child is working on, talk about it over dinner or in the car. Your children need to feel that what they do in school is important to you.

You can also find ways to incorporate lessons into everyday life. This reiterates the value of what they are learning in school.

Attending conferences and open houses also sends a clear message that you think school is important. Another important role parents have is helping children set reachable goals. Not every child can earn straight 4s, and it's not fair to let one strive for an unattainable goal. If the goal is too high, a child might give up, he said.

Talk to your children about what they want to improve on from the previous year or grading term in school, and follow up with questions. Say things like, "You really want to do well this year, so tell me more about that." Through conversations with your child, you can create a list of meaningful and realistic goals that suit the child's abilities.

Praising children for success along the way helps them develop a love of learning. It also prevents them from developing a fear of failure. Giving children specific feedback can help them achieve their goals. Drawing links between a job well done and the amount of time spent on the assignment or the way it was organized helps children with future work.

Parents need to do more than just motivate their kids to perform well. They also need to provide them with a place to do homework, study for tests and complete projects. The right environment is crucial to academic success. Set aside a place that has the necessary tools - art supplies, glue, pencils - to do homework and projects. Schedule a time for homework, usually immediately after school or after dinner. If you let kids do homework "whenever they get around to it," it sends a message that it's "not that important".

Celebrate your children's successes. When they do well, "make a big deal about it," especially if they've exceeded the goals they've set. Praise the effort, even when the outcome is not what you expected. Remember, change and improvement takes time. The important thing is to keep moving forward.