Parent/teacher conferences are right around the corner. These 15-30 minutes conferences are designed to give parents/caregivers/teachers the opportunity to discuss every child’s academic, social/emotional and physical development. Do you know what to expect during your meetings? What questions may help you with home/school connections?
1. It is always helpful to go to your school’s website and search for the curriculum used in the various subjects. Conferences provide the perfect opportunity for your child’s teacher to share examples of how your child is progressing in their understanding of concepts within a given math, reading, science, social studies, or SEL (social/emotional learning) curriculum.
2. Asking teachers ways you can help your child at home to support what they are doing in class is a GREAT way to maintain home/school partnerships. Your child’s teacher has tons of ideas on how to support their efforts at home. Most schools have a list of approved websites and/or resources including parent/child programs to extend your child’s learning at home.
3. If you have concerns about anything share them with your teacher during conferences. Your 15-30 minute conference time is your time to confidentially discuss with your teacher(s) all concerns related to your child’s academic, social/emotional or physical success in a given school year. Anything you feel might help your child’s teacher understand your child better is ALWAYS appreciated by a teacher.
4. Conferences are the perfect time to alert your teacher(s) of any changes in family dynamics which could influence your child such as new additions, separations or losses. Children manifest family changes in different ways inside the classroom than they might at home. Teachers who have the necessary family history can better support a child during the school day. Open parent/teacher communication is always kept confidential by school staff.
5. Thank your teachers for all that they do and let them know you are there to help them in any way that you can. Our teachers spend varying amount of hours with our children depending on their school dynamics. However, the role they play is extremely significant in shaping how they feel as a learner.
6. Let your child’s teacher know you appreciate all their efforts. Teachers need your praise and support as much as our children need it from them.
I’d love to hear how your conferences went. Send a reply!
Erika Burton, PhD.