Friday, October 19 , 2018, 7:11 am | Fair 51º

 
 
 
 

Rae Largura: Tips for a Successful Parent/Teacher Conference

Make the most of the meeting with preparation, appropriate questions and follow-through

It’s almost spring break, but first it’s time for parent/teacher conferences and report cards.

Parent/teacher conferences present an excellent opportunity to get in tune with your child. It’s extremely important to have good communication with the teachers, and it’s imperative for both parties to know and share the same goals for your child.

Teachers really do care about your child and want to see him or her prosper and enjoy school. It is a two-way street, though. You, the parent, must take an active role in your child’s education. Talking to your child’s teacher and attending the conferences are a great way to stay connected and help the teacher help your child.

Here are some quick tips on making the most of the parent/teacher meeting:

» Before the meeting, get prepared. Make a list of concerns, questions or information worth sharing. Ask your child if he or she has anything to share. If appropriate, have your child join you in the meeting. This can be appropriate at any grade level. Children feel secure knowing their parents know what’s going on with them at school. Whether children show it or not, they like it when their parents are in communication with the teachers.

» Be on time. The first reason is of respect for the teacher. They have busy lives, busy days at work, many students for which they are responsible and many parents with which to communicate. The second reason is that you want to get the most out of the meeting as possible. Conferences are usually on a 15-minute, possibly 30-minute, block of time, so be organized.

» During the session, don’t be shy. Ask the teacher questions such as: “What are my child’s best and worst subjects?” “Does my child get along well with others?” “What are my child’s strengths, and what can we do to make my child’s weaknesses stronger?” “How does he or she relate to the teacher?” “How does he or she help out around the classroom?” How does my child play with others on the playground?” Share the likes, dislikes and struggles your child may have. We can all agree that every child is different and may learn in different ways. Let’s do our part in helping a teacher do his or her job and ensuring your child to enjoyment and prosperity while there.

» This also a great time to address any issues that your child may have with the teacher. Let’s face it, not every child is going to like him or her. It is important to find out how your child feels about the teacher and vice versa. Your child will enjoy school and learn more if there is a mutual fondness between them. More than likely, the teacher will not address this, and often the child will not have the skills or feel secure about opening up about his or her true feelings. This position lands on the parent.

» If your child has a diagnosed learning disability, it is always the parent’s and student’s prerogative to meet with the principal, special-education director and teacher to evaluation or revise the child’s Individual Education Plan.

» Lastly, express appreciation for the teacher(s). Teachers are people, too. Notice and appreciate their teaching style, their classroom, their time spent with you and their commitment to your child.

» On your drive home, think about your home environment. Could poor grades be because of too much chaos? Too many extracurricular activities? Unlearned study habits? Are they getting enough sleep and eating well? Are they shutting down because feel they can’t meet your expectations (which may be too high)? Are they getting enough support and encouragement?

A parent/teacher conference should be a happy occurrence. We can all agree that education is extremely important. Use this forum, of many, to stay connected. A parent’s relationship with his or her child’s teachers has been proven to be a strong indicator of that student’s success.

Don’t wait for the phone call or note sent home to meet with the teacher. Schedule a status check meeting for no other reason than to stay connected. The relationship between school and parent will illustrate brightly through your child.

— Rae Largura is president of Leading Edge Tutors.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Email
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership
×

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.