How to Partner Effectively with Your Child’s Teacher

your childs teacher desk


Your Child’s Teacher Is Your Education Partner

Parenting doesn’t end when kids head off to school. Instead, it’s essential to approach your child’s teacher as a partner in the effort of raising healthy, well-rounded, productive kids. These simple tips can help you establish strong and effective relationships with your child’s teacher that last the entire school year and beyond.

Respect Time

Classrooms run on a tight schedule throughout a typical school day. Teachers feel stressed from trying to fit in everything they’re required to teach as budgets disappear and days are cut from the school year. Practice respect for the teacher’s time by being punctual when dropping off or picking up your child. If you decide to volunteer in the classroom, make sure to commit carefully to days and times so that you can follow through. And when you need to talk with the teacher about your child, set an appointment in order to give and receive uninterrupted attention. These simple tips show respect for the time and effort your child’s teacher gives each day.

Believe in Half

As a teacher, one of my favorite phrases to say to parents was, “I ask you to believe half of what your kids say about me, and I’ll believe half of what they say about you.” Why? Because I have found – as a teacher and as a mom – that kids rarely include all of the pertinent details when they are telling a story. If something doesn’t sound right when you’re talking with your child, reserve judgment until you can contact your child’s teacher. This conversation may fill in some important details that your child may have left out!

Keep Track of the Backpacks

It’s difficult for kids to remember the variety of details they’re hit with during the school day. To help keep parents informed, teachers send home papers with important information at least once or twice a week. Stay informed by helping your kids clean out their backpacks each day. At our home, the routine consists of taking everything out of backpacks and putting each item where it belongs, from lunchboxes and homework to important notices for parents. This ensures a clean backpack and an updated calendar throughout the school year.

Bring Something to the Table

If you have concerns about your child – and let’s be honest, many of us do – remember that the teacher isn’t responsible for “fixing” your child’s behavior. When an issue or concern arises that needs to be addressed, make an appointment to meet about what needs to happen both in the classroom and at home to help. This may require adjustment on your part regarding routines at home, but your willingness to partner with your children’s teachers will provide consistency and support for everyone involved.

Kelly Wilson is an elementary school teacher with ten years experience and a freelance writer. For more tips on how to raise healthy, productive kids, visit Dr. Nathan Doyel, a Sherwood dentist

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