Tips For Effective Parent Teacher Nights

Parent-teacher night only comes once a year, so it’s important to keep in touch with your child’s teacher throughout the year. Teachers can give you the scoop on what your child is learning in class and how he or she is faring with homework and tests—so no surprises lie ahead with the next report card.

Email is a great way to communicate with teachers for quick updates. Or to get a more in-depth review, schedule a time to meet during the teacher’s office hours. Spending 30 minutes talking with your child’s teacher every few months will ensure your child stays on track to finish the school year right.

To start off the Parent Teacher Night conversation

Start off with your child’s teacher, ask a few questions to learn the lay of the land in class. Find out what’s being covered, as well as how your child is doing on assignments and tests, with questions like:

  • What topics are being covered this month in class? What types of homework and projects should I expect my child to be working on?
  • Is my child enthusiastic about the subject matter being covered? If not, are there other topics that have sparked their interest?
  • Does my child participate in class? Do they ask questions or take part in group activities?
  • Does my child turn in assignments on time? If not, which ones are they missing and is it possible to still complete them?
  • How does my child do on exams? Is my child prepared at test time, or does he or she need to spend more time studying?
  • Are there areas where my child needs extra help?
Once you know how your child’s progress is stacking up

Talk to the teacher about additional resources and activities that will help you and your child at home. Questions to ask include:

  • How can I help my child prepare better for tests? Are there worksheets or study guides we can use together?
  • If they are excelling in a subject, what additional reading or exercises can they do to stay interested and challenged in class?
  • What additional resources should I use if my child is struggling and needs extra help?

It’s never too early to develop a great relationship with your child’s teachers. They can be valuable partners in achieving whatever plans you and your child have for after high school.

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