Making more time

Modern family life means that quality time together can often end-up squeezed. Samantha Sawyer of Staines Preparatory School argues the ‘new normal’ is the right time to look again and try to make more time for family.

Lessons in perseverance

Perseverance is a critical life skill which is best learnt outside of the classroom suggests Charles Fillingham of Francis Holland School, Regent’s Park. And, ironically, these self-taught lessons can sometimes be some of the most valuable of all.

Trampoline parenting

Clemmie Stewart and Rebecca Glover of Surbiton High School outline their concept of ‘trampoline parenting’ – where children are allowed the opportunity to make mistakes and learn from these, whilst being supported by their parents when they fail.

Preparing to return

The new school term will be a uniquely anxious time for children, parents and staff. Sarah Segrave of Eaton House The Manor Prep offers ten suggestions to help ease the return to school.

Hitting the ground running

Transitions test us and the challenge of starting at a new school should never be underestimated. Tim Hands offers some advice on how to get secondary schooling off to the best possible start.

Singing the praises

Knowing when to praise, and how much, is a delicate art explains Dominic Floyd of Mount Kelly. The motivating power of praise cannot be underestimated but it needs to be appropriate and proportional.

The problem of worry

Families glancing at the news find much to potentially worry about, especially during the current pandemic. Julie Robinson explores how parents can help children tackle their worries through greater perspective.

Making transitions easier

Transitions are significant for all of us, whatever our age. Vivienne Durham of GSA explores the wide range of factors which help determine stress-free transitions for school or on to university.

Parenting for resilience

We are all tested by bullying at some stage in our lives. Julie Robinson of ISC offers some suggestions, and appropriate strategies, to help your child cope if encountering bullying at school.

Encouraging happiness

You cannot expect your child to always be happy but, as Beth Kerr of Cognita explains, there are vital things you can do as a parent which help encourage healthy patterns of sleep, diet and exercise.

Embrace something new

There is a growing tendency for children to specialise too early. Bill Sawyer of Yarm Prep argues that children should regularly embrace something new in order to ensure they maintain breadth.

Spoilt for choice?

Children have extraordinary opportunities available to them at prep school but how can they keep their feet on the ground and not take these for granted? Alastair Speers of Sandroyd offers some advice.

The rise of Sindependence

Too many parents think that throwing money at a problem will solve it. Tim Hands of Winchester College shares his concern about parents who view anything other than Oxbridge as second best.

Cheering from the sidelines

Schools rely on parents being aspirational for their children but this can sometimes go too far. James Priory explores the line between parental encouragement and unhealthy vicarious ambition.

Good manners cost nothing

As adults, we should all take our responsibility as role models very seriously. Julie Robinson of ISC explores the challenges of being a role model and why teaching good manners is vital.

Ten golden rules for parents

It's often as hard for parents as it is for a child when starting a new school but, as Linda Renfrew of Hoe Bridge School suggests, there are some simple rules which make life so much easier for everyone.

New term resolutions

The start of term is a time to look ahead not just academically but pastorally as well, says Claire Boyd of Wimbledon High School. Positive behaviours can make all the difference to a child's mental fitness.

Measuring a child’s success

Success is a relative concept as Tim Smith of Hampton Pre-Prep & Prep explains. Sometimes, to help motivate a child, it is better to remove pressure and remember it's a marathon and not a sprint.

Finding perspective

It is easy to get caught up in all the pressures of life – at work, home and school. Kit Thompson of Unicorn School urges parents to step back and check if there is enough space in their family lives.

Mixed messages

Nobody offers you lessons in how to be a parent which is a mixed blessing. Matthew Smith laments the fact that one of the biggest challenges of being a parent is dealing with all the conflicting advice you receive.

Preserving childhood

It is easy for parents to look back on their childhood with nostalgia. Sophie Banks, Headmistress of Eton End School, explores how we can preserve the best of childhood with the realities of the modern world.

Facing disappointment

Dealing with disappointment is a key life skill all children must develop. Alastair Speers, Headmaster of Sandroyd, looks at why parents must step back and try not to always shield their children from failure.

Don't worry, be happy!

Parents take comfort in the belief that the most important thing is for their child to be happy at school. But is this really enough? Gareth Jones, Head of St. Andrew's Prep Eastbourne, looks at both sides.

Acceptable ambition

It is only natural to want the best for your child but how do you ensure that parental ambition is in line with your child's needs? Matthew O'Reilly, Head of St Mary's Junior School in Cambridge, explains.