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.
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.