Back to school is full of activities – from supply drop off to meet the teacher there are lots of opportunities to get to know your students and their families.
As you prep for these important moments, here are a few things that will have your parents leaving your Meet the Teacher Night raving about the upcoming year.
Getting Organized for Meet the Teacher
If you are lucky, your room will be crammed full of parents who are all eager to meet the teacher and tell you all about their child. It can be overwhelming to see the room of parents full of hope and excitement…and perhaps a little fear…all sitting in front of you waiting to hear all about your plan for their children this year.
Here are a few things to be sure to include in your meet the teacher conversation.
Share the Important Information: The Basics
A room full of parents can be intimidating. Focus on the important information and remember that these parents are here because they care about their child's education. Use that to your advantage.
Focus on giving the important information first to help ease worries and make sure parents have plenty of time to ask questions.
Don't forget the parents who can't attend! Set up a website or create handouts that will let them see your presentation so they can stay in the loop.
Todays Meet is a great (free) way to collect questions in advance and to be sure you are touching on the topics that are important to all parents.
Remember, it is called Meet the Teacher
You've probably already sent home the daily schedule and an overview of the curriculum. While you should spend SOME time on the logistics, parents also want to know about YOU!
Parents want to know and trust you. Share a little about yourself, your family, your hobbies… maybe even your summer vacation. Let parents know about your journey that led you to be standing in front of them.
Why did you become a teacher?
What do you love most about teaching?
Share your passion.
Connect to Their Child's Experience & Rope Them in as Allies
Give parents insight into what a day in your classroom feels like. Here are a few things parents want to know:
- Behavior management system: Explain your approach to classroom management. Be sure to emphasize the positive.
- Communication regarding concerns: Let parents know how you communicate concerns and address misunderstandings.
- Explain support: Describe how you differentiate & support all learners
- Share stories (without names): Give examples of ways you encourage students to be their best selves and how you let them know you love them. Share stories of years past and how you have handled different situations.
Understanding how you'll support their child both academically and social-emotionally helps reassure parents that you have systems set in place to make sure every child gets what he/she needs.
Let parents know that you see their children as individuals and you will look after them to make sure their school experience is positive.
Open the lines of communication so parents feel they can approach you with questions, concerns or a peek into their child’s life at school.
Why Meet the Teacher Matters
When parents leave your classroom feeling that their child’s social and emotional needs are being met along with getting a strong education, they are more likely to be your allies should challenging situations arise.
With a little preparation, a successful Meet the Teacher event can be the precursor for a year full of amazing home-school collaboration. To sweeten the deal, I love to leave a little treat on each desk for the parents to enjoy
To sweeten the deal, I love to leave a little treat on each desk for the parents to enjoy during my presentation. There are a million great ideas out there, but here is the one I use in my room.
You can get a free copy of my Meet the Teacher Night treat tags here.
Meet the Teacher can be a little intimidating for even the most seasoned teacher. By focusing on these core components, you can ease your stress and help parents better understand what the coming year will be like.
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