Communicating with Your Child's Teacher
Your child's relationship with his teacher is an essential part of the educational experience. Learning to effectively communicate will not only keep you informed about classroom progress and assignments, but will also give her teacher a clearer understanding of your child's needs.
When and how should I contact my child's teacher?
- Contact your child's school prior to the beginning of the academic year to schedule a visit with the assigned teacher to introduce yourself and get acquainted.
- Prior to the meeting, write down any questions that you may have about the rules and requirements for the class.
- Maintain a positive attitude before and during the meeting.
- Dress appropriately.
- Discuss concerns that you may have concerning your child.
- Do not speak negatively about your child's past school or teacher.
- If you cannot meet with your child's teacher prior to the beginning of the year, contact the school secretary to request a meeting time that would not interfere with the teacher's classroom schedule.
What kinds of questions should I ask?
- What materials are needed?
- What subjects will be taught in the class this year?
- What are the rules of the classroom?
- How are grades determined?
- What type of projects and assignments will be required?
- When are progress notes sent home?
- How is discipline handled?
- What can we do at home to be better prepared for class?
What kind of expectations can I expect and fulfill?
- Encourage your child to do his best!
- Encourage your child to talk with the teacher if he doesn't understand assignments.
- If you are frustrated about something at school avoid contacting the teacher when you are angry; cool down, then schedule an appointment to discuss the situation.
- Remain focused on your child's education.
- Participate in school and class events; this communicates your desire to be involved in your child's school experience.
- Share your values and expectations for your child.
- Let the teacher know if family circumstances have occurred that may interfere with the learning process i.e. a death in the family.
What can I do if I don't get along with my child's teacher?
- Discuss your feelings with the principal.
- Attempt to focus on the needs of your child.
- Be respectful towards the teacher.
- Avoid speaking negatively about the teacher to your child.
- Request that your child be moved to another class if negotiation and/or compromise have failed.