Developing partnerships with parents and guardians is a critical factor in promoting student learning. Positive relationships with parents can be developed by reaching out to them to introduce yourself early in the school year.
Following up with them to provide positive feedback on their children’s performance begins to develop trust. Working together requires teachers to listen to parents and collaborate on strategies that support student learning. Periodically throughout the school year, teachers should meet with parents to discuss the academic and social development of their children.
As a rule of thumb:
1. Be specific with material that student is struggling with.
2. Be inviting with your tone.
3. Already have a relationship with parent.
4. Have the student’s work available for viewing.
5. Have others present if you are expecting trouble.
6. Sit on the same side as the parent.
At Parent Teacher Conferences, start by telling the positives. Then, tell the problem areas and next steps leading to solutions.
Sitting on the same side as the parent is important because it seems less adversarial and more cooperative.
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ASCD Express 612 – Tips for New Teachers: Making the Most of Parent-Teacher Conferences. (2016). Ascd.org. Retrieved 2 October 2016, from http://www.ascd.org/ascd-express/vol6/612-wilson.aspx
Clark, M. & Smitherman, D. (2012). Communicating Achievement Test Results with Parents (1st ed.). Retrieved from http://pdp.acsi.org/PDP/images/contentpageimages/TN%20Fall%202013%20Information/CSE16.3_CommunicatingAchievementTestResults.pdf
Davis, M. (2013). 5 Resources for Parent-Teacher Conferences. Edutopia. Retrieved 2 October 2016, from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/parent-teacher-conference-resources-matt-davis
Education World: Tips for Successful Parent-Teacher Conferences. (2016). Educationworld.com. Retrieved 2 October 2016, from http://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/successful_parent_teacher_conferences.shtml
Parent-Teacher Conferences. (2016). NEA. Retrieved 2 October 2016, from http://www.nea.org/tools/parent-teacher-conferences.html
Parent-Teacher Conferences: Before, During, and After. (2016). TeacherVision. Retrieved 2 October 2016, from https://www.teachervision.com/new-teacher/teaching-methods/48464.html
Parent-Teacher Conferences: Tips for Teachers. (2016). Kidshealth.org. Retrieved 2 October 2016, from http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/parent-conferences.html?WT.ac=ctg#
The secret to comparing schools based on test scores. (2016). Retrieved from http://www.greatschools.org/gk/videos/school-test-scores-video/