A child’s first teachers are her parents, as active teachers and as role models and this continues throughout her life. Education is not like a running relay race where a runner stops when passing the baton to the next teammate. Rather, it’s more like a basketball game where everyone works together to win, passing the ball or taking a shot. Everyone’s involved in the game at the same time, doing their best.
When parents and teachers have good, two-way communication, everyone wins.
The child does better in school. Studies show that the more parents are involved with school, the better the child does academically.
It increases parent and family engagement. When parents feel that they are partners in their child’s education, they will feel more comfortable participating in school events and volunteering to help do their part for the school.
It builds teamwork. Even when a child is struggling it will be a positive experience as everyone works as a team communicating on how to best help the child.
It helps at home. Good parent-teacher communication helps parents understand how they can contribute to their child’s education from home.
It helps teachers teach. Parent involvement helps teachers as well. When parents are engaged in education, they have a more positive attitude toward teachers and their cooperation helps teachers have a better, more thorough hand at teaching.
How Teachers Can Create Good Communication with Parents
Communication from the teacher about the child should emphasize both the positive and the negative. If the parents are only hearing the negative, it is going to deter parent engagement. Would you be eager to talk to someone who only complains every time you talk to them?
Contact each parent when you receive your class list for the year. A letter, email, or phone call is good but it may be beneficial to ask each parent for their contact preference going forward.
Create a class newsletter with important information about what you are learning and encourage students to write articles for it to further interest their parents. Include reminders of upcoming events to try to encourage parent participation. Make the newsletter fun and engaging! Be sure to include it on the school’s website and send home a paper copy.
Organizing workshops for parents is a great way to encourage engagement. Ideas include topics on balancing home and work lives, how to handle difficult conversations with your child, creating a loving and supportive home environment for your child, or how to help with homework when you forgot everything you learned in math class.
How Parents Can Create Good Communication with Teachers
The responsibility of reaching out shouldn’t fall entirely on teachers. As a parent, there are a lot of things you can do to strengthen your relationships with your child’s teachers. If you think your child is struggling, for example, contact her teacher right away. Ask for suggestions on how you can help at home. They can offer strategies they’ve learned through their experiences with other children. Don’t only contact your child’s teacher with something negative to say. Contact the teacher when you feel something is working well too. Everyone likes to hear that they’re doing a good job!
The main way that a parent can help create a good parent-teacher relationship is to be there. Attend school events. Be there for conferences, sure, but show up for sporting events, open houses, school fairs, etc. and say hello and get to know all the teachers and staff. Volunteer to do something. All schools rely on parent volunteers to help. It’s a great way to get involved and to let both teachers and your child know that you’re there to support them.
At HOPE Christian Schools, we value the relationships we have with the Milwaukee families we serve. We are partners in their education, building character and creating lifelong learners through Christ’s unconditional love. Our students are held to a higher standard and achieve success in the classroom and beyond.
To find out more about what HOPE Christian Schools has to offer, visit our website or call us at (414)377-0430.