It is that time of year again and parent teacher conferences are in the air! Going in prepared is as important for a parent as it is for a teacher. I have no yet attended a parent teacher conference as a parent yet since my daughter is only 3 but I do know that there are some specific questions that I would like to have my parents ask me as a teacher.
As a parent going into parent teacher conferences, it is important to have an idea of what you want to know about your students education. Yes, the teacher is going to tell you everything you need to know but there are some things that should want to know if the teacher leaves something out.
It is important to be involved in your child’s education. It is not solely the teachers job to make sure they are passing, learning and practicing. As a parent, it is important that you know what your child is doing in the classroom. Is there homework? What is being required of them in the classroom? How are they doing (and don’t wait until conferences to find out!)?
Being up to date on your children’s education can help prevent surprising conversations, even if the teacher is not offering the information, ask.
Here are 5 questions that as a parent you should ask at parent teacher conferences:
- How can I help my child become a better reader? Ask for a book list- most teachers have access to some sort of book list for your child’s reading level. Get that list and start going to the library and having your child read those books with you. This way your child is probably completing their homework and spending quality time with their parents.
- What should we be practicing at home for math? This not only helps your child to want to learn more about math, but it helps you know where your child is at and more importantly how to help them. Knowing this can help increase your child’s interest in math since when the math gets a little harder, sometimes kids don’t want to practice as much and anyway that you can make math learning fun (math family games, math facts, math computer games, etc.) the better.
- How is my child doing socially and emotionally in school? Having a sense of if your child is having social problems at school with other students is important since not all children will tell you what is happening at school or if they are being bullied or if they are the bully. Being aware of their social and emotional wellness while you are not there is so important to help prevent any further problems in the future.
- Is my child performing at grade level and if not, what extra help can they receive? Knowing what “grade level” means and where your child stands on that scale is super important.This can help them from falling too far behind their grade and prevent frustration and feeling of failure. If they are not at grade level, you need to ask what type of extra help they can receive. It is possible that your child can qualify for an IEP (individualized education plan) or a 504 plan which both can help give your child what they need in order to do the best that they can.
- What type of technology can I have my child do at home to practice? This is a great question because not all teachers will offer up the information so it’s important to ask for a list of websites or apps that you can have your student be practicing at home. Making learning fun and having your child know you are on the same page as their teacher is a huge benefit to the success of your child in school.
Please make sure you go to the conference ready and have these questions done. I know the answers to these questions will give you the best idea of your child’s education and what you can do to help aid them.