Parent Communication


I'm back from my little vacay and y'all I had a blast hanging at the beach with my sweet family. I even picked up a nice little tan while I was there.




It was so hard to leave, but once I was home I got right back into the rhythm of cleaning and getting stuff done.

I finally got my classroom up and functional but I am waiting for my sweet husband to get my video footage taken so that I can share a video with all of you! I am always excited about decorating and putting my room together.

I wanted to share another organizing tip for the upcoming year. Something that is really big with my school and most likely every school out there is parent communication. As teachers we want to get to know the families that are a part of our classroom. This helps us to better understand our kiddos' needs and abilities.

During Parent night, which is help before school starts, I can see the anxiety in so many of my parents' eyes. They are leaving their babies with someone that they barely know and having to trust them completely. It's hard. I know. Teachers can either make school easy or very difficult and I have seen both of these as a mom and as a sister to my younger brother and sister.

As a part of my 'binder system' I have one binder that is completely devoted to my parents. This is where I house all of my documents that pertain to parent communication {e.g. notes, conferences, phone calls, emails etc.} The list can really go on and on!

I use a 1" binder from staples and I like to keep everything coherent. So all of my binders behind my table are going to be the same minus my lesson plan binder which is typically on my desk open.

I started by thinking what was the most important for me and what were the items that I needed to be at my fingertips at a moments notice. I absolutely hate when I need a copy of something and it's the end of the day and no way for me to be able to leave my room; so I wanted this to be efficient and practical.

Here are the forms that I wanted have ready to go in my binder.




1. Parent Conference Request Form - I typically print these on a bright color using Astrobrights paper. I love this form! I have been using this for three years and it has always worked fabulously for me. I keep my schedule as open as possible for my parents. I want them to know that I am there for them and I WANT to meet with them as often as possible. So the form has a list of days and times that I am always available. Now, if in any case that I am not available I can easily cross out that day/time with a sharpie. Quick and simple. I send the form home in my kiddos' communication folder and when they return it I can schedule their conference based on the three options that they give me. Once scheduled I send home the conference questionnaire form.


2. Conference Questionnaire Form - This form will go home once the conference has been scheduled. I provide the confirmed date and time and give them a date of when I need the questionnaire back. The form is very simple, but it gives me a great idea of how the parents view their child's struggles and strengths. At the bottom of the form I ask for any additional items that parents would like to discuss. This is so beneficial!  I am able to be as prepared as possible for my conference. This way I can pull any materials or forms that parents may need to reference or fill out.


3. Conference Reminder - This form is also printed on Astrobrights paper. I send this home the day before the conference. It is a friendly reminder and I added a little blurb of what to do in case parents need to reschedule.


4. Conference Form - This form is always half way completed before the conference. Before I ever look at the Conference Questionnaire, I like to go through and fill out what I believe are the students' strengths and weaknesses. That way I can always compare to what the parents say. It's interesting... let me tell you. I am one to say that my boys always behave differently with their teachers than with me. It's a flat out fact. During the conference we can compare what they filled out and discuss the root causes for this and see if there are any issues that need to be addressed. This is where I log information discussed and goals that we want to meet by the next conference date. I will make a copy for the parents and keep the original in my binder.


5. Parent Communication Log - I have a tab for each child in my classroom. I use numbers only because I can easily use this every year. Once I have a role I can make a student number list and punch it in right in front as a reference. I keep a communication log behind each tab. I use this to keep notes of every time I communicate with a parent. It holds as a great reminder for what was discussed, when, and any other actions that were agreed during the discussion. I will also keep the conference forms {all of them}, notes & e-mails behind the log for each child.

Something that I forgot to mention is that after every conference I like to send a thank you card to the parents. I like the idea of sending something personable and thanking them for taking the time to meet with me. I keep an assortment of cards behind my small group table that I can easily access.

        

Overall, I LOVE this setup. It's easy and organized. To check out a live view of my binder check out the video I have posted on my YouTube channel.

.... AND....

All of these documents are available for FREE! Click HERE to get the files.

Thanks for reading and I hope I was able to give you some great ideas.


1 comment

  1. I love the idea of sending a thank you note!

    ReplyDelete