Tutor Doctor | Jan 4, 2013

Good Communication: How to Talk to Teachers

Categories: K-12, K12

Keeping up with your student’s progress should be a year-long endeavor rather than a heated conference after a bad report card. Teachers and parents are both really busy, but taking a couple of minutes once a month to touch base will help you both to provide more effective support to your students. As a parent, you want to stay informed and there are a few key tips to parent—teacher communication that help you keep abreast of your student’s progress.

Advantages of communication

Keeping the lines of communication open benefits your student. Knowing which academic aspects need work mean you canget a tutor or spend more time at home working on homework. Knowing what’s happening at home and any behavioral nuances means that the teacher is able to deal with classroom behavior more effectively.

Building a partnership is beneficial to your teacher too. Teachers need the support of parents to provide a positive academic experience. Lack of funding means that most teachers could use help and resources that parents can provide. Teachers who get inside information on how best to deal with students are more effective at coping with large classes and particular behavior. You are the best person to provide teachers with effective means of dealing with your student’s particular personality and learning needs.

Tools of the trade

While you are both probably too busy to have meetings every time you wish to discuss something, there are a plethora of ways in which you can communicate. Attend all open houses and parents evenings, use diaries and make sure that the teacher has your number and other contact details. Schedule meetings where possible, even when things seem to be going well.

Working together

Approach each situation with openness and a genuine willingness to work together with the teacher. Being on bad terms with your student’s teacher is counterproductive. Don’t make unrealistic demands or demands for special treatment for your student.

If your student repeatedly voices a concern about what’s happening at school (in the classroom or with peers), it’s important that you discuss this with the teacher, but be prepared to listen to both sides of the story.

Ask the right questions

When meeting with teachers, ask about your child’s academic progress and what can be done at home to offer support. You can also discuss any behavioral issues and work on a united method of dealing with these effectively. You can also discuss your student’s social progress and how they interact with their peers.

Keeping the channels of communication open and positive is an effective way to create a partnership between your student’s teacher, tutor and yourself. This will help you to provide the most effective support network for best results.