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Connecting with Parents

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Izabela Ziarko Izabela Ziarko 490 Points

Hello, new teacher here! I've noticed my students' parents aren't as nvolved and concerned with their child's performance. I always view teaching as a triangle: teacher, student, and parent. How can I connect with parents without being too much or creating an overwhelming feeling for the parents?

Margaret Wiegman Margaret Wiegman 896 Points

Hello Izabela,

I believe that viewing teaching as a teacher-student-parent triangle is important because they are all connected. The first step in including parents in their childs' education begins at the start of the school year. Sending out a 'Meet The Teacher' letter is a great way to introduce yourself to all of the students and families. To continue to include parents and strive for involvment I think that having a simple class homepage would be beneficial. This can be through whatever platform your school or district uses but some examples can be google classroom or class dojo. Through this type of interaction with the families I think it is simple enough to navigate and use and I personally love that it can be used both ways. You, as the teacher, can post any important information or awesome work by your students and other people have the opportunity to comment on those posts. The key to not being "too much", in my opinion, is to send out possibly a weekly detailed email for the parents to read. Then reiterate in simpler terms on the google classroom what the instructions are for assignments or daily scheudles or whatever it is you need to communicate. Being overly descriptive and communicative will help espeically help at a time like now with remote learning. Remember though, parental involvement is not a one way street and there is only so much work you can put in! The parents have to want to be actively involved in their children's learning! 

Maggie From Carolyn Mohr's Science class   

Alexis Seiwerth Alexis Seiwerth 1058 Points

Hello Izabela, 

I also view teaching as a teacher, student, parent triangle. I feel like you can connect with parents without being too much or creating an overwhelming feeling by simply sharing an email with them to ask a question or if you need to exaplin something to them. I think that having a forum such as classdojo and having the parent be able to quickly send you a message as if you are texting can be helpful as well without being to overwhelming. Also I think that sending out weekly newsletters, or weekly checkins would be beneficial as well and not too overwhelming because they can simply ask questions on their or provide feedback on something their child did and then send it back to the teacher with the student. I think that parents like communicating with their childs teacher and that if you build a relationship with them from the very first day they will not feel overwhelmed, but instead comfortable with talking to you and not mind when you so send emails, or weekly check ins, or things such as that. Basically establish that relationship with them day one and let them know how you will contact them, or ask them how they would like to communicate as well as what form of communication they will prefer. Hope this helps a little! 

Lexi Seiwerth From Carolyn Mohrs science class 

Lawrencia Young Lawrencia Young 500 Points

Hello, I had to learn the hard way when it came to parents being involved in their children's education and learning process. The first step i took to get them involved was weekly newsletters being sent home. With those newsletters it informs the parents of the expectations of each student. Also there was a daily homework/conduct sheet that the parents must sign and return daily. With these homework/conduct sheets it holds a parent accountable for keeping track of the learning process when it comes to behavior and grades inside the classroom. No parent is going to sign any paperwork without reading it first. I'm not saying force it but there comes a point where some parents may need that extra push to become more involved. 

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