Back 2 School: Tips for Building a Relationship with Your Child's Teacher

With school returning to full swing for teachers, kids, and parents, I will be sharing Back 2 School with you this week- a series geared towards parents from a teacher's perspective. I taught 3rd grade gifted and talented for 2 years, and I taught kindergarten last year. Even though I only have three years of teaching experience, hopefully I can share with you some ideas and insight that will help you and your child have a better school year.

Today I am sharing with you ways to build a relationship with your child's teacher. A positive relationship with your child's teacher is priceless when it comes to setting and reaching educational goals with your child's needs in mind. Parents are a teachers most valuable resource! 

Tips for Building a Relationship with Your Child's Teacher

1. Stay "in the know". Many teachers send home a weekly newsletter that includes all of the happenings for the week. I suggest to parents that they hang that newsletter, or any other important notes that come home with their child, on the front of the refrigerator. This way they can make sure they know when picture day is, when the fundraiser money is due, what projects we are working on in our classroom, etc. Often times there are opportunities for volunteering listed in newsletters, too.

2. Plan your visit. I do not know a teacher that does not encourage parent involvement in their classroom. An extra pair of hands is always nice, especially in a classroom of young students. However, many parents fail to recognize school as a place of work. Let me explain. Everyone at school has a job. Teachers have the job of educating students. Students have the job of trying to learn the skills being taught. Throughout the school day the "work load" of everyone's job changes, freeing up lots of great time for visitors. If you would like to come visit your child's classroom please let the teacher know, so that you can schedule the most appropriate time to do so. 

3. Contact the teacher first. Please contact the teacher first if you feel as though there is an issue in the classroom that needs to be addressed. Do not contact the principal or other school administration until you have talked with the teacher. Often times the issue is a simple misunderstanding or miss communication when a child is telling you about the events of the day. Talking with your child's teacher can usually clear up any confusion or questions you may have. 

4. Trust and respect your child's teacher. You know your child better than anyone else, but your child's teacher knows about education. There may come a time where your child's teacher mentions something to you about their educational progress that you do not agree with. Please realize that their teacher cares about them and wants what is best for them. Respect their input, and respect their judgement when it comes to educational matters concerning your child. 

5. Form a partnership. The way to provide your child with the best education possible is to work with their teacher as a team. As parents and teachers begin to view each other as a resource, they start striving together to help the child reach their educational goals. When parents form this partnership with their child's teacher, they are ensuring educational success for their child. 

What are some things that you do to build a relationship with your child's teacher? 

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