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The time to go back to school is around the corner and I know that many parents and caregivers are getting clothes, books, and supplies ready for the first day. And while we spend a ton of time, energy and money-getting our kids, and some helping others kids get ready…the question is are WE ready.

Parents, family members, and the broader community are sometimes ill prepared for the shift back to school even as we get these babies ready. So there are a few things we need to do if we are going to model for our kids what they need to do.

1.      Create Order: We will not have students with order if we are living in homes that are out-of-order. The summer can be an even more hectic time than the school year and normal habits sometimes fall to the wayside. Spend the next two weeks organizing rooms, areas where homework will be done, setting up space for supplies and begin to talk about how things will be done if they are not in place. Order is also about rest. Too many of our kids put us to bed. One of the things that will greatly affect their success is rest.

2.      Know what they need even if you may not be the one who ultimately provides it:  It takes extra time, but please go to the website of your child’s school (if they have a good one) or call the school if they don’t to make sure you have the school calendar. Keep important dates up in the kitchen so EVERYONE knows what they are ahead of time. Find out from teachers what they will be covering, what books they will be reading, and things that may be helpful to support the work at home. Know their teachers from the jump as that relationship can help during good and challenging times in the classroom. This takes time many of us claim we don’t have. But it’s worth it.

3.      Read and Talk:  If you can read, just a little of what you children read and have dinner, in the car or down time conversations with them about it. It creates accountability and you also may be really impressed with what they know and how they think.

4.      Sacrifice Now To Receive Later: If we show them sacrifice they know how to model it. Give up your TV show to sit with them during homework. Take the precious free time you have to spend some of it talking to them about their future. We are all pushed to the limit and sometimes our kids still try to do the opposite if what we do just to get at us. But they wont forget what they see, positive or negative.

And if you have no kids, Find one you can be an inspiration and motivation to once a week. Our kids are the sum total of the adults who invest in them. You show me a crazy child, I’ll show you crazy models.  Frederick Douglas said it best “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men/women”.

I’m Jeff Johnson and That’s My Truth:

If you want to be inspired by a Baltimore 8th grader ready to go back to school, check out Lil Key (Keyon Meyers) and his YouTube video “Backpack Flow”. This is some hip-hop we can all support. Visit here.

11 thoughts on “Be a Role Model: 4 Back to School Tips for Parents

  1. 50 years MLK Day celebration: KKK Threat saddens my heart. They’re marching I’m still dealing with racism, unfair education system and violations of injustices. 50 years later, there is less of an” innocent until proven guilty system.” There is less interest in remedy injustices and equal rights. There is almost no interest in discovering the truth. People that can provide legal help, don’t have time unless you have the money. By the time a poor person can save the money, the statue time of limitations is up. This plan works out perfect for the persons and corporations in the wrong. However, it keeps the oppressed depressed for they have waited so long for nothing.
    Their justice fighting went from days to years without seeing JUSTICE come to light. The court will not hear the long kept evidence. So, while we cry for help, they flip the calendar of no justice.

  2. my best friend’s ex-wife makes $78 every hour on the laptop. She has been laid off for 5 months but last month her income was $14177 just working on the laptop for a few hours. Read more this site. . . .www.ℛush.COℳ

  3. {Still think I’m mental or overprotective}
    ABC NEWS: School Gunman Took Hostages, Car May Have Bombs

    KKK School Threat /Two knifes (Knifes don’t make a gun sound, but they kill)
    Children Withdrawn from School
    Need legal help!

    Look at my beautiful children GOD blessed me with! We have to hold the School District accountable. We have to keep children safe.rjohnson4ob (at) gmail (dot) com

  4. Margaret E. Khan on said:

    I’m making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do…

  5. Jeff,
    Great advice! I like what you said about our kids putting us to bed, and the very idea of sacrificing parent’s free time is most valuable!
    Sadly too many of our children do not come from two-parent homes, but thankfully there are those of us who are doing our best to assist those in need. And yes, Jeff, it is worth it, because although we do not have kids, we are helping our children to survive for tomorrow; assisting them today prepares them for their future and ours.

  6. Rayar Johnson on said:

    Please, Please Help us! In the February 14,2013 Wayne County Newspaper,( Front Page) It tells of the school violations and bullying and harassment my children have suffered in the WCSD,Mississippi. But, it did not mention that the latest of those threats were from the school KKK note. Now, this same girl where two knifes were found on her is back at school and sitting behind my child on their bus.
    This is not the first racial discrimination . My kids have a right to a safe school environment.
    The WCSD said they would handle it and they would prosecute and she would not be back on that campus. They would not tell me one court date no notification, just it’s been handled. 911 did not even send an officer at my request the day of.
    The children are shocked and scared. I beg for justice. I do not know why help for justice is so hard. They are not going back to school until they are represented. This is sad that anyone would think we are okay with this.

    • Rayar Johnson,
      I have read your posts here and on Twitter, and it is my hope and prayer that justice is served. In addition, we are praying for the safety of yours and other children.
      I must ask if you have contacted your local government officials regarding this VERY SERIOUS matter. I have only visited the South (at one time staying over a month) and I must say it was thee most unnerving experience ever. I do not have any advice, but if it were me – an avid voter – I would be legally stalking my local officials and causing a spectacle of myself while making a demand for my rights.
      Thanks for sharing your story, and I TRULY hope and pray that someone actually DOES something.
      Oh, have you contacted Sharpton and/or emailed Tom Joyner?

      • Rayar Johnson on said:

        Open Letter To America:

        The girl in question, this is not the first time, I reported that she had a knife in school. The racial slurs has been suffered for years. The school found two knives and KKK drawings in February 2013 and now August 2013 she is at school and on the bus after they had promised she would not be back on school property.
        My oldest saying “sometimes I wish, I was dead.” She has written another letter after discovering the criminal is back. This letter does not mention the same statement, but my child says, “no one knows her pain and suffering from that Buckatunna School and she want Wayne County High School to be different and to have a good school year.” She still goes to outside counseling for over a year for her emotional and vulnerable low self-esteem from WCSD violations. All four of my children are in counseling due to school violations. It is important to know, we have bleeding knees and depression over these ongoing situations. All I can do is pray, report and take my children to counseling. My children these particular ones was sent by GOD for me to be their mother. Maybe no one else would have fell in love first sight. My babies are just as important to me as any other loving parent. I love my children more than anything or anyone. They deserve a equal chance like anybody else. I am forever dedicated to advocating for their safety.

        My public plea should indicated how many I have contacted over the years, begging for help, before my children are slaughtered like “Trayvon Martin.” Over the years, I have contacted the school and the WCSD Board, the Mississippi Department of Education, the local sheriff department, Mississippi State Officials, media stations,churches, including CNN, President Obama, FLOTUS, Oprah, Beyonce and other stars, Tom Joyner, Al Sharpton, Rainbow Push,NAACP, SPLC, ACLU, US Department of Education, USDOJ and many others. So, it seems that if none of this people or organizations will respond that I should have just shut up and give up. I have not saw the victory of, but, I believe everyone should have civil rights. I aim to teach my children that those with integrity still fight for JUSTICE. They must see mommy still asking and begging for help in faith that one day, some one will say this is wrong and I stand with you until it is corrected.

        See the other source will say, its been handled or we did it all by policy. They depend on the fact that their word comes over mine. The depend on no one making time to get involved. They depend on the evidence I collect to expire and is never examined. They depend on saying Let’s start fresh and move forward and put the past in the past. But, this is ongoing, this is child endangerment. This is the life of my children. Give me the opportunity to show evidence of lies and corruption and along with policy violations that can not be denied. Would anyone like to view my evidence? Does anyone have time for the truth? Does any one feel that my children have a right to the best rural education they can receive? Does anyone think it is safe to send my children back to school with no assurances of safety? Does anyone want to help? Does anyone feel they should keep ignoring my plea?

        Keeba thank you for your reply, hopefully you can get more citizens involved in a resolve for safety and JUSTICE for Four. Please forward to anyone who can help.

        Rayar Johnson

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