Want a Successful School Year? How to Create it With Your Kids

Before you worry about their teacher or their classroom, try this...

Together, you’re capable of creating their best school year yet.

When you have school-age children, their school experience affects so many aspects of your family’s life. How do you set them up for success all year?

In this episode, Carol and Anne show you how you and your children can create the school experiences you want together. Their tips will help your children feel confident that they can create their lives.

This episode’s Parenting Practice

This week, set intentions for the school year with your family—either one on one with your children, or together as a family. Write them out in clear phrases of what you’re choosing to experience. Listen to this episode for tips on how to bring these desires to life.

Transcript of podcast episode

Carol: Wow, we’re creating this, not that. Stop complaining about it.

Welcome to “The Child Whisperer Podcast.” I’m your host, Carol Tuttle, author of the best-selling parenting book “The Child Whisperer.” I’m with my co-host Anne Tuttle Brown.

How do you create a successful school year for you and your child? Now, this could be applied to whether you’re in public school systems, charter school systems, online, homeschooling. And we’re going to get to some basics about creation techniques, and then there’s the side of actually creating strategies and infrastructures and the to-dos. But in my world and what I’ve taught my children is that everything starts with an idea, an intent, an affirmation, what do you want? What do you want to experience? Let’s not just see what happens, let’s create what happens. We have a say. We have this ability to infuse our world with very clear direct energy to what we want to experience and have that materialize, form, and manifest. And so we’re going to talk first about that. Then we’re going to look at some of the more strategic hands-on practical things you can do to create success.

Now, I’m the expert on how do you create your life? I’ve been practicing these strategies for three decades now. I raised my children to understand them. If you read my book “Remembering Wholeness,” there’s a great story in there that Anne and I were driving in the car and we kept hitting… Remember this story?

Anne: Yes.

Carol: Why don’t you share it then?

Anne: You go ahead, you’re excited to share.

Carol: Yeah. Well, I love it because you were only what? Eight or nine at the time? You were young, you were in grade school and we’d been practicing energy circles and affirmative thought and language and really speaking what we want into our world. And we kept hitting these green lights. And you hadn’t told me that you had influenced that because you looked at me and you said, “Mom, you know you why we’re hitting all the lights green? I asked my green light angels to go ahead and turn them all green for us.” I thought, “Let’s receive it.”

Anne: That was really my own initiative?

Carol: Yeah.

Anne: That’s cool.

Carol: I didn’t tell you to do it. You should read the story again.

Anne: I know.

Carol: I didn’t tweak it.

Anne: No. I guess I thought it was like you had done it once and then I did it the next time.

Carol: Yeah. I think I probably had presented that idea.

Anne: You had shown that.

Carol: Yeah.

Anne: Definitely demonstrated it in.

Carol: Definitely. Yeah. And you were the one that taught me really a life-changing principle when I remember where I was standing at the base of the steer, I was down at the bottom floor in the foyer. You were at the top where the little railing in the balcony was and you were asking, “Mom, I really want this.” So, you were really expressive in your wants. And in the typical parenting way, I said, “Well, you can’t have that.” And I was stopped in my tracks, the spirit just like sort of two by four to the face and said, “Stop telling your child she cannot have what she wants. Wanting is a good thing is what moves us to go after greater things in our lives.” And then I was like, “Well, what am I supposed to say?” It’s like, “Just acknowledge her want. You don’t have to be the one to deliver it.” It was huge for me because I realized we come into this world wanting and yet I was now stifling that. And it taught me to work with this desire we have as human beings for experience in goodness and joy in our lives because anything you wanted was a good thing. I just…

Anne: I remember you changing it to like, “That’s great. How are you going to get that?”

Carol: Yeah. I’m excited to see how that shows up or good for you to want that. I love that you want to experience new things. Yeah. It really was a big shift. So, now that you’re in this phase of life where children are in their school experiences, take some time. In fact, I’m going to present the parenting practice at the front of the show because I think this needs to be it, is what do you want to experience? What do you want your child to experience? Now, Anne, you have done some of this. In fact, I was asking you about Katie’s teacher and how you feel about it. What was something you did that actually influenced the outcome of that?

Anne: I just remember when she got into kindergarten and especially in first grade as I knew she was going to be a full-time student every day, all day long, I just set the intention that she would have the most supportive teacher in classroom environment.

Carol: Right. That would come together every year. So, that would sound like, “I’m grateful that my child’s teacher is a great support to them that supports success of their school year.” And that’s aligned. You influenced that. So, you can write these out for every aspect of the experience. “I’m grateful that our morning routines come together easily, I’m grateful that I’m sensitive to my child if there’s something we need to talk about or work through, I’m grateful they’re attracting friends that support them and we’re having these beautiful friend experiences and they’re learning social skills. I’m grateful that if any challenges come up that we’ll know how to proceed and receive the inspiration we need.” See where I’m going with this?

Then you do this with your child, each of them one on one. Or you could do it as a family unit and go around the room and say, “All right. What do you want? What do you want?” And you inspire your children to understand they have a say. They have a say to create a joyful life. We’re so heavily conditioned to think we have to live compromised scenarios that you’re bringing to your family this whole ideology of “We don’t have to settle anymore.” Will we have challenges in life? Yes. But we can learn from them and we can move through them successfully and be guided because they’re all designed to help us grow rather than to make us suffer. My book “Remembering Wholeness” is a great tool to read as a family, to learn these strategies. And then the next level would be mastering affluence.

So, the parenting practice this week is gather your, whether it’s correct to go one-on-one, first, always both parents get involved because if both are not, it’s choosing and some could be disruptive. No. We’re creating this, not that. Stop complaining about it. So, you and your children have set your intentions through the practice of writing out in clear phrases what you’re choosing to experience by acting as if you know it’s going to happen, by “I am grateful for this happening, for this experience.”

Anne: I’ll tell you what I’m going to do. At the time of this recording, school hasn’t started yet. At the time this goes out, school will have started for most people. So, I am going to implement this like the night before school, I want to do a back to school dinner and just make it exciting.

Carol: Aha. For your family?

Anne: Yeah. And then since Katie is the only one in school right now, I think it’d be good to include the whole family so her little brothers can see her getting excited and us creating a tradition here.

Carol: Right. Because school is a wonderful experience. Yeah.

Anne: And then I think on my own I will get more specific about the schedule because now school… I’m excited for school to start again…

Carol: Yeah. Let’s go get into those practical.

Anne: Summer. But I want to create my intentions around that because I’m excited for school to start again, but I’m also a little bit nervous because I’m excited because there’ll be more routine, but I’m also like, okay. There’s going to be more to be responsible for and a little bit less time to manage it in.

Carol: Right. Structured. Yeah.

Anne: And so this conversation is inspiring me to sit down and just be more intentional about how I want our time to look like when we are home together as a family and managing homework and extracurricular activities and other things that… jobs around the home that I would like to be accomplished. And so being more intentional about that rather than having it catch me off guard with what I don’t want, will be supportive.

Carol: Got more “Child Whisperer” coming up right after this brief message.

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Carol: Let’s get into some of the… I’m going to turn this segment over to you Anne because this is the practical things you’ve got to just to run the household, manage all the things that are going on. What are some of your strategies that will support the practical side of school and being back in that routine that will create success for you and your child?

Anne: What comes to mind for me is homework right off the bat. That’s added responsibility for the parents when school gets started and…

Carol: And I want to acknowledge some of you in the lower grades feel strongly that that’s an option whether your child does the homework.

Anne: I didn’t know it was an option.

Carol: That was news to me too. I was actually pretty impressed with some commentary in “The Child Whisperer” Facebook group because there was this question about my first-grader is really… well, they used the word struggle I invite people to switch that to challenge, by the experience of homework and there was a lot of feedback that says, “I don’t… I tell the teacher we’re not doing it.” They just don’t see the value at that young age. So, I just want to put that in there. That’s your business, not ours. And just a different…it was like, “Oh, okay.”

Anne: Well, maybe they’ll use some of those… [crosstalk 00:10:00].

Carol: Yeah. No, no. I was impressed with the parent putting themselves in that position because I think that will create success too.

Anne: Yeah. And I think working together with your child you know what’s best for your family. So, for my first grader, the way they did the homework was supportive. It kept it light and quick. And so I’m hoping that that’s the strategy that the second grade teacher approaches this year. But I was talking to my daughter about piano. She’s done piano for two years and we try and practice about five times a week and sometimes it goes great and sometimes it is just laborious and long and she’s trying to get distracted. And I just was really frank with her and she was like, “Why are you getting mad at me?” And I’m like, “I’m trying to move us along.” And so I’m staying firm and using my stern voice and I said, “What do you want to experience? Do you want this to be hard or easy?” And she said, “Easy.” And I was like, “Do you have any ideas to make it that way?” And she started to suggest, “What if we practiced one time in the morning and one time at night rather than like a bigger chunk?”

Carol: That’s a good idea.

Anne: I was like, “That’s a good idea.” So, this is moving into homework and structure. Enroll your children into like, “How do you want to accomplish this?” Especially, when they’re in the upper grades, they need to.

Carol: I just tuned into something when you said that. You guys were playing the wrong roles. You said to your Type 3 daughter whose energy is completely designed to move things along, that you were trying to move her along. And I’m like, “Oh, good luck. You’re a Type 2. You’re pushing the river right now.”

Anne: It was definitely awkward to do so.

Carol: Consider each child’s nature in getting them motivated. So, in this case, it would have been more appropriate to say, “We need to move this along. That’s what you’re really good at. What do you suggest?” Type 1. “You’ve decided we’re doing homework. Hey, it’s important to you that this be enjoyable, that it feels light and fun. What do you suggest?” Type 2. “Homework is something that is not an option. I’d like you to come up with a plan. How you’re going to be able to see that you fulfill that?” Type 3 talked about, “How are you going to move your homework along so it’s done? And what reward do you want in play? What does that look like?” Type 4. They’re pretty much are like, “Well, I know you have homework, you do your homework.”

Anne: Well, then I would say validate and acknowledge that.

Carol: Yeah. Just say…

Anne: I’m just checking… Approach it from that.

Carol: They’re all or nothing. So, they’re going to be totally on top of it and you get to acknowledge them and say, “You’re so great with your follow-through in just taking care of that and getting it done.”

Anne: “Is there anything I can do to support you after that?”

Carol: Yeah. And then if they’re totally on the nothing side of it and want no interest, just say, “You know this is required, I’d like you to come up with a strategy that this can be efficient and a task you can easily fulfill. I want you to think this through.” See how I’m using words very specific to their Type?

Anne: And enrolling them to use their gifts.

Carol: Enrolling them. Yeah. So, make it…

Anne: I like that it’s not on me.

Carol: Rather than you trying to get them to do something. And this is the same application of getting them to be ready on time in the morning, getting them… Is it the morning routine? Is it the homework? Because what creates more success is if your child is motivated by their own initiative and you’re not trying to get them to do things. “Get to school on time, get your homework done, get your piano practice in.” It’s going to work a lot smoother if they’re like, “I’m motivated by my own instinct. I’m going to do this.” And you’re like, “This is great. So successful.”

Anne: Awesome. I’m adding that to my intention list. Yeah.

Carol: That’s an [inaudible 00:13:41] there. “I am grateful my children are motivated.”

Anne: True to themselves.

Carol: I’m supporting them, true to themselves which motivates then initiates their own motive to move forward in what they are responsible for. That’s a really strong one right there. So, you want to replay that what I just said and write it down because your parenting strategies will be infused with insight and ideas in which to create that.

Anne: You can also refer to “The Child Whisperer” book. In each section, there’s learning style and also classroom behavior.

Carol: Go back to that right now.

Anne: Yeah. Go back to those at the beginning of the school year. Right now is a great time to just refresh your memory about what to expect and then also how to support.

Carol: I’m excited for you to be posting in “The Child Whisperer” Facebook group, your success stories of how well your school year is going. And you can see what we’ve taught is applicable to any…the school experience is very broad nowadays, a lot of options. And so what we’re teaching will be applicable to any of them. Do the parenting practice which is to first, what do you want to experience? What do you want to create? You have a say. Predict your future by creating your future and get your children involved with you in that opportunity.

Thanks for listening. For more support, go to thechildwhisperer.com where you can purchase the book, subscribe to our weekly parenting practice email and find a transcription and audio of “The Child Whisperer Podcast.”

Anne: If you’re listening on iTunes, thank you for leaving a review. If you have a parenting question, please send it to [email protected]

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