Every teacher feels PRESSURE during certain points of the school year, such as this. Maybe "just keep swimming" is not a fair analogy...but enjoy! It’s worth every time you spend on your lessons plans to make them interesting and engaging for students. It's worth the extra time you take to talk to parents, and it’s worth the early mornings and the late evenings and the sleepless nights. We are making changes. Even though it feels like you don’t have the time, stop and take a moment to soak in the awe-inspiring work you are doing with your students every single day. You are amazing!
- Approach Parents with Positive Assumptions - Welcome every parent as your strongest ally in working with your student (their child).
- Prepare, Prepare, Prepare - Know exactly how you want to use that 15-20 minute time with your parents. For some of you, you may not get another time with them again this year. Make sure you're honest about their child's progress, sharing both strengths and weaknesses...even to the child that is working above grade-level.
- Be Solution Oriented - Always convey a growth mindset. All behaviors can change given the right conditions. If you want to see changes and have concerns about a student, be prepared to offer specific and actionable solutions.
- Take the Opportunity to Learn - How can parents help you understand their child? What can you learn from them that will help you address the needs of that student?
- Show That You Care - As a parent, I've had both positive and negative conference experiences. As a teacher, walking away from those negative experiences really had an impact on my practices as an educator. Don't underestimate the power of the positive feedback for parents; yet, be specific. A generic "good job" doesn't tell me much about my child. Think about how you would want to be treated as a parent and what kind of information you would want to know.
- Parents' Guide to Student Success - Grade-level parent-friendly explanations of the common core standards and tips for supporting their children at home.
- Parent Roadmaps to the Common Core State Standards - English Language Arts - Another parent-friendly common core document with more specific information for parents regarding ELA.
- Parent Roadmaps to the Common Core State Standards - Math - Another parent-friendly common core document with more specific information for parents regarding ELA.
- Common Core State Standards Initiative: Frequently Asked Questions - A site that may benefit parents who have questions or misunderstandings about the Common Core State Standards.
- DreamBox Parent Letter - Go to your own teacher Dashboard to download the letter to give to parents. It will contain all the information that your students need to access DreamBox at home on computers, iPads, or other devices.