As the school year progresses it is important to make sure you are keeping in touch with your child’s teacher. It may seem more pressing at the beginning of the year when you are just finding out about class routines and rules, but maintaining a strong, positive partnership with your child’s teacher is vital in helping your child succeed in the classroom. Here are a few ways you can make sure you are working with your child’s teacher and creating a team in educating your student.
First: If you have a question–just ask! You don’t have to wait for an official conference or an invitation from a teacher to ask questions. Any time there is confusion about a work, a situation in the classroom, or even a share item, please ask! Most teachers welcome an email or a text message and will get back to you just as soon as they can. The exception to this statement is drop off and pick up time. Asking a teacher how your student is doing in a particular work or about a potentially confidential matter while students are transitioning is not a good idea. A quick “I emailed you!” will alert the teacher that you want to talk soon. Of course, if there is a situation that you would like to sit down and talk with your teacher about in depth make sure you let them know.
Second: Keep the feedback coming, negative and positive. If your student is struggling and communicates it to you at home, please share it with your teacher! Sometimes a student is hesitant to ask for help and can hide difficulties from the teacher. On the flip side of that, if your student comes home excited about a work or a lesson, please let your teacher know!
Third: Keep in mind that your teacher sees a different side of your child. When your child is in the classroom their concentration, behavior, and independence may be very different than what you see at home. A child who drags his feet to clean his room may be the first to volunteer to vacuum the rug, a child who asks mom to cut her food may prepare her own snack, and a child who balks at reading may grab a book first thing in the morning. Be sure to listen to what your child’s teacher is telling you and rest assured very few children spend all day at school doing “Nothing.”