As parents, we are essential partners in our child’s education, from the time they first enter school through their academic career.
We know our children better than anyone else, and we can provide their teachers with important information, perspective, and insight. When you share information about your child’s daily life — their language and culture, their strengths and weaknesses — you help their teachers get to know them as individuals. This information empowers your child’s teachers to adapt lessons to meet their needs.
During these conversations, it is also important to ask about what your child is learning in the classroom and how you can support them at home. The work that you do at home to reinforce what your child is learning in the classroom has a big academic impact.
When you stay connected with your child’s teachers, it builds a relationship where you, your child, and their teachers benefit. Here are four ways you can partner with your child’s teachers to support your child’s and their teachers’ success:
1. Plan your communication
During your initial meeting, discuss how you and your child’s teachers will communicate throughout the year — in frequency and in format. Encourage teachers to reach out to you and contact them whenever you have questions, concerns, or even exciting news.
2. Set goals
Ask teachers about learning goals for the school year, how your child is doing relative to those goals, and how you can support your child in achieving these goals.
3. Always stay informed
Look in your child’s backpack every day, and frequently view the parent portal for assignments, grades, and important information from teachers and school administrators.
4. Actively participate
It can be something simple like reading books to the class or helping with special events or projects. This not only supports teachers; it also gives you a deeper understanding of what goes on in your child’s school.
When you partner with your child’s teachers in their learning, you empower teachers to give their best to your child to help them grow and thrive.
During Teacher Appreciation Week the first week of May, we honor teachers and thank them for their hard work and the pivotal role they play in our children’s lives and long-term success. But remember, every day is an opportunity to appreciate and support teachers!
James L. Accomando, National PTA President, [email protected]