The Importance of Parent-Teacher Communication
Some of the most important and influential people who will ever enter your child’s life are their school teachers. Second to parents and family members, school teachers will spend the greatest amount of time with your children and have the closest relationships with them. Therefore, it is important that you as a parent develop a one-on-one working relationship with your child’s teacher every school year. Effective and consistent parent-teacher communication will be beneficial to your child in many ways as well as giving you the peace of mind of knowing the person who is spending time with and influencing your child on a daily basis.
Keys to Successful Parent-Teacher Communication
Of course, your child’s teacher has a classroom full of children (oftentimes more than one class) whose parents he or she must make time for, so communication must be as constrictive as possible as it may be quite limited. It is especially important to touch base on a regular basis with your child’s teacher in order to find out if your child is experiencing any issues with class work, getting along with classmates, etc. These interactions can be kept brief but are of the utmost importance in helping your child to have a successful and productive school year.
Something that many parents don’t think about or are not prepared for is the fact that every teacher is different. They are, after all, only human, and we all have our own personalities. Therefore, be prepared to get along better with some teachers than with others. However, this cannot be allowed to affect your communications regarding your child, and your child must not get any inkling if you don’t particularly care for their teacher. This can have very negative consequences. Remember to keep things professional and cordial no matter your personal feelings, and focus on your child and his school performance.
Make certain your child’s teacher knows that he or she is welcome (and encouraged) to contact you directly with any concerns regarding your child. Make certain they have your telephone number and email address, and keep these updated as necessary. Drop a note to them a few times throughout the school year just to touch base and let them know you are involved. By doing this, you are showing both the teacher and your child that you have a sincere interest in your child’s academic career, and parental involvement has been proven to result in more successful classroom performance by the student (reference). Take the time to give your child every possible advantage throughout his school experience. Letting him know that you are involved and that you care about his classroom experiences will do wonders for his self-esteem and confidence. And therein lies the foundation for a great education.