Ah, the complexities of the parent-teacher relationship. The existence of PTA meetings is a testament to the trials, tribulations, and wonders of navigating school versus home life for little ones.
It’s about time we talk candidly about what parents want teachers to know, and what teachers want parents to know. These are the general themes from ideas shared by real parents and educators. Let us know if you have any to add.
Dear Parents…Love Teachers
• Your child may be acting differently at school than he/she is at home. In other words, believe us and our accounts of their behavior. We know it can be tough to address, but honesty and trust is better for all parties involved. We have your child’s best interest in mind.
• You’re an educator too! Reinforcement of school lessons and encouragement can massively boost your kid’s education. Take a minute to review with your child what they’ve learned during the day or better yet, help with homework. Not sure where to start? Ask them what they enjoyed most, what they enjoyed least, and if they have any questions about what they learned.
• Home preparation is everything. Tired and/or hungry children are not easy to teach and are often a disruption in the classroom. Our schools do our best to help with basic needs, but our resources are limited. When you make sure your child gets a good night’s sleep and breakfast, it enables us to teach them way more effectively.
Dear Teachers…Love Parents
• Hold the judgment, please. We’re doing our best to create the healthiest and happiest possible home environments for our young ones, but we’re not perfect. Parenting is stressful enough without feeling judged by educators, and we want to be able to trust and collaborate with you. We’re all on the same team here!
• Gossip hurts. It’s destructive and detrimental to everyone involved when you discuss my child with other parents. More often than not, I’ll find out about it and it will undermine relationships and our mutual trust. Confidentiality means the world to us.
• Communication is everything. We love hearing from you! Let us know how we can be more involved in the classroom and school community. Fill us in on how our kids are doing.
• You are appreciated, & we’re willing to help. We might not always express it enough, but we’re incredibly grateful and respectful of the important role you play in our child’s life, and every child’s life! Thank you!
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