School is back in session.  For some of you, the kids may be going back to school any day.  For some of us, school has already been in session for two weeks.  And as parents we may feel a little bit of relief that school is back in session.  Summer break has not been quite as relaxing as we recall when we were kids, right?  Trying to find ways to entertain the kids can be quite challenging, so the school year starting up is music to our ears.  Now they are the teacher’s responsibility.

But that isn’t exactly true is it?  Yes, I will give all of the credit in the world to our teachers.  They are amazing people who really find a way to connect with our kids and help them to perform and reach their potential.  Equally as important, though, are the parents, us.  It really cannot be stressed enough how important the parents are.  We need to be active and involved in our kids’ lives and in their educational pursuits.  And imagine the reward!

As adults, we take so many things for granted, skills that we didn’t always have yet now utilize as second nature.  For example, reading.  You are reading these words right now with no problem at all (monosyllabic words will do that) but there was a time when you couldn’t read.  Do you remember?  I sure don’t.  I remember not being able to multiply or calculate long-division, but read… I always knew how to read, didn’t I?

For you– there was a time when you didn’t know about a statute or the difference between a whole-life policy and a term-policy, or what an inspection contingency was.  But the groundwork for that education was lain starting as far back as you can remember and hopefully you had someone instrumental in your home-life who supported you every step of the way.  (Of course, as I sit here now, did I use the word “lain” right or should it have been “laid?”  Must have missed that day of school; I wonder if it was a Rosh Hashanah.)

When I sit down with my daughter who just started kindergarten and try to sound out words like “red” and “am” and “see” I can just see the wheels as they slowly turn in her head, trying to get a handle on the sounds the letters make and how they fit together.  At some point this will all be second nature, but for now, it is the most challenging thing with which she is faced.  And it is SO FRUSTRATING!  Yet, it is so rewarding when she actually gets the word right.

But if parents are not actively involved, whether it be in working on homework, interacting with the teachers, and everyday discussing the school day’s events, we as parents will miss out on these rewarding moments and will be completely oblivious as to our child’s development.

As Brooklyn figured out to read the word “yellow” the other day, I had a dramatic pause and vision into the future of a college graduation.  Sure, I thought with some fear of the years between now and then and the amount of hard word she will put in to get to that accomplishment, but I also thought of the pride that I would have for her accomplishment, knowing how hard it was to read just those first few words…

I am not eager to get there, but I am excited for each new baby step along the way.

And this week, I am going to thank my parents for taking the walk with me.  Thanks Mom and Dad, I couldn’t have done any of it without your help and support.