Parent Tips for Attending Parent-Teacher Conferences
Teachers help parents stay updated and involved regarding their children inside the classroom through parent-teacher conferences.
However, some parents may not be sure what to expect and how to prepare for these conferences. The uncertainty can make parent-teacher conferences sound daunting or overwhelming when they don’t have to be!
What is a Parent-Teacher Conference?
As mentioned previously, it is one of the ways teachers can update parents about their children in the classroom. But what does that really mean?
This conference is where teachers give you an up-to-date report on your child’s social and academic progress in school. It is a chance for you to discuss your child’s strengths and weaknesses.
It is also a great time to discuss any problems and address any concerns that may be preventing your child from fully reaching their true potential.
A parent-teacher conference is a great chance for you to open the lines of communication with your child’s teacher.
What Should You Expect at a Parent-Teacher Conference?
Attending your first parent-teacher conference can be nerve-wracking. However, you should not worry since no one is really sure what to expect or what to ask during a parent-teacher conference the first time around.
To help you prepare, here are the things you should expect to hear during the conference:
- An assessment of your child’s behavior, social and academic achievements, and struggles
- An overview of your child’s overall performance in school
- Stories about your child’s behavior, interaction with other kids, and any struggles that they may be experiencing
How Can a Parent Prepare for the Conference?
You want to get the most out of your time with your child’s teacher. Coming to the interview prepared means asking all the right questions to help you understand what you can do to improve your child’s learning experience.
Here are the things you can do to prepare for the conference:
- Review your child’s recent report card
- Look for any trends across report cards. Try and look for a pattern to determine whether they are struggling in any subject.
- Take note of how your child has been performing so you will have an idea about how much your child has been improving or where they still need your assistance.
- Review recent homework and test results.
- Talk to your child about how they feel about their classes and their class performance.
- Ask your child if they dislike anything in class in particular.
- Find out if there is anything your child would like you to talk to his or her teacher about.
- Take note of anything that you want to discuss or ask about during the conference.
Things to Ask for a Successful Parent-Teacher Conference
Here are some things that you may want to ask about during the parent-teacher conference:
How Is My Child Performing In Class?
Asking about your child’s learning skills and performance in class can provide you with valuable insight into learning skills and habits that your child may need to practice.
Does my child participate in class?
There are several reasons why kids do not participate in class. It is not always because they are struggling with a subject, it can be about something else and you need to find out why. You need to understand the problem to be able to solve it.
Does my child struggle with anything?
You want to know if your child is struggling with anything in class so that you can figure out how to help them. For instance, if your child is not giving their 100% in school, you need to identify the problem.
Is your child finding it hard to understand the material? Are they having a hard time staying focused? Are they struggling to see the board?
Does my child excel at anything?
Understanding your child’s strengths can help both you and the teacher create a learning plan that suits them well.
Identify which methods work for your child and then incorporate them into other areas where they may be struggling.
How can I help at home?
Learning does not stop when your child steps out of school. Learning is an ongoing process. Show that you are willing to get involved by asking what you can do to help improve your child’s performance.
What to Do After the Conference
Your child may feel a certain amount of anxiety about your meeting their teacher. Put them at ease by discussing the main points of the meeting. Acknowledge their achievements and let them know that you are there to help them with things they are struggling with within class.
A successful parent-teacher conference helps you stay aware and involved in your child’s education and learning experience. Asking all the right questions can help you make a plan on how to improve your child’s performance in school.
If done right, a parent-teacher conference can help you build a connection with your child’s teacher. Teachers are also rooting for your child to succeed, so it makes sense for you to become partners in this journey.