Your child spends a lot of time at school each day and his or her teachers are one of the most influential people in their day. And since you’re hopefully both on the same team as you advocate for your child, you’ll want to know how to communicate with your child’s teacher. Here’s some ideas to help you get the ball rolling.
As soon as you can, make an appointment to meet with your child’s teacher. Ideally, this should be done before the school year begins or shortly afterwards. By starting the relationship off early, there won’t communication problems to deal with so it will help to start things off on a positive note. If problems do develop later in the year, you’ll have already established a relationship with your child’s teacher. Don’t wait for a problem before you meet your child’s teacher.
- Do let the teacher know that you want to be considered a partner in your child’s education. Ask the teacher what you can do to help your child succeed. You may be surprised at their suggestions.
- Find out when your child’s teacher has a break during the day. If you can, stop by the school to see if there’s something you can do to help them. You might also look into becoming involved in the PTO or volunteer to help in your child’s classroom.
- Most teachers, especially of younger children and ESE students, send a notebook or some other type of communication home with your child at the end of the day or week. Be sure to take the time to look through your child’s backpack or notebook for any notes they may send. Then, once you’ve read them, you can either send a note in response or simply initial it so they know you have read it.
- At some point during the year problems might come up that you’ll want to communicate to your child’s teacher. If there’s been a death in the family, problems at home or other life stressors, send a note to your child’s teacher or even call them to bring them up to speed on what’s going on. If your child is struggling all of a sudden, this communication will help the teacher to understand why this might be happening.
- Be sure to follow through with any promises that you’ve made. If you say you’re going to do something, be sure to follow through. If circumstances come up that you won’t be able to, you’ll want to let the teacher know what’s going on.
- Remember, you are your child’s best advocate. Know when and how often to effectively communicate with your child’s teacher. This can make all the difference in your child’s educational success.