Ever wonder how to get the most out of a parent-teacher conference?
For starters, do your best to be punctual for your interview. Teachers have to stick to a tight schedule during interview hours to fit everyone in. If you must cancel your appointment, phone the school to let them know – you can re-book for another date.
After that, here are some tips to make the most of your interview:
Start on a positive note. An idea could be to mention something that your child enjoys about school or the particular classroom they are in.
Make sure that you check up on your child’s social interactions at school as well as their academic progress. Ask the teacher how your child gets along with others and if there is anything in particular that you should know about their social and emotional progress. Also, ask about your child’s work habits, behaviour, participation, and learning style.
Let the teacher know your child’s interests, hobbies, strengths, and areas where they need extra encouragement.
Prepare a list of questions you can refer to and make sure you haven’t left anything out.
Don’t hesitate to take notes while the teacher is talking so that you will remember what they said once you get home.
Ask the teacher about classroom rules and discipline, homework procedures, and overall expectations for students.
It can be easy to get angry or defensive if the teacher raises challenges, but try to keep an open mind. Talking together about challenges is the best way to make sure that they are addressed before they grow and that your child has the support they need to make improvements. Work with the teacher, ask questions, share ideas that have worked for you at home and be an active part of planning new ways to make things better.
Ask the teacher what is the most important thing you can do at home to support your child’s learning.
End the conference on a positive note.