As a parent I was keen that my children did well at school and it certainly seems to be the case that outside influences, that is outside to the school and including in the home, can have an effect on ability and quality of learning. I have to admit here too that I used to be a teacher, but with my own three boys one of the most important things I liked to keep an eye on was that they should go to school in a positive frame of mind. To this end I had to put on the cheerful face to present to them at the start of the day. If there is too much shouting and screaming in the morning it sets everyone on edge and is the first nail in the coffin of a bad day.

Quite often you will find there is a good cop and bad cop of the parents, whether by design or just because the of the differing outlooks on life the pair have. One will have the cup half empty view of life, especially when still a bit tired and grumpy in the morning. While the other could be a morning person and wake with a smile after the sleep has been wiped from the eyes, or the first cup of caffeine soaked beverage has been downed. Make sure that the right person is in charge of organising the beginning of the day.

So there you are and the brats, I mean your little darlings, and not yet ready for the world, still in the land of nod or at least pretending to be that way. There are breakfasts to be got and then eaten, perhaps they have to make some sandwiches for lunch and time is flying. What do you do? Well it depends on whether the tail is wagging the dog or not. Are your emotions getting the better of you, your behaviour and attitude? That is what I mean about the tail being in charge, when you are not in control of your life for those important minutes between getting up and getting out of the house. You have to smile and be cheerful, even if you don't feel like it at first and you will find it is infectious. The children will respond better to you and you will really will feel happier too.

I suggest strongly that if the partner in your life is not able or willing to be the sort of person that gives the good vibes, then send them back to bed and get them out of the way if you can. If not then use the same tactics with them too. If you persevere with this, everyone in the household will go to school or to work with a spring in their step. Your children will do better at school because they are not grumpy, they will be more receptive to the knowledge being thrown at them. There will be a self fulfilling prophecy when the confidence that the children get, from being better at the schoolwork and doing well in tests that will influence them for a life time.