Interactive Parent-Teacher Conferences
Parents enjoy conferences with time to share their own experiences with their child. “Concentrate on maintaining eye contact, being empathetic, asking open-ended questions and using everyday language… listen to parents’ views as well as letting them know how their child is doing.” This will help to deepen your relationship as you build mutual respect and work towards seeing each other as equals.
Welcoming parents to spend time and help in the classroom establishes a rapport between parents and preschool teachers. It gives the families an opportunity to see what a typical day is like in the classroom, and to observe their own child in an environment different from home. While parents are in the classroom, ask if they have any feedback to share.
Hosting classroom events can help to develop the parent teacher relationship by inviting an opportunity for more casual socialization. “Children are also likely to feel more supported if they see their parents welcomed into the classroom. Social events that have worked well in preschools include parent nights, park playdates, family picnics, pizza and board games evenings, and family movie nights.”
“Asking families for feedback gives you a better understanding of their expectations of their children’s learning, uncovers small problems before they become big problems, and shows you respect their values and opinions. Survey questions can cover issues such as early learning, school readiness, communication, relationships and support for cultural differences.”