Developing a Positive Relationship Between Parents and Teachers is Important

Teachers spend all day in the classroom with the students and may see parents on a daily basis, occasionally during the year, or never at all during the school year.  Many parents work full time and are unable to come pick up their child from school.  A teacher should not assume that the parent doesn't care about school just because they are not there to pick up their child.

Parents do want to know what their child is doing in school.  Some children aren't very verbal and don't tell their parents about what is happening in school.  Regardless of how often a teacher sees the parents, it is very important to develop and maintain a positive relationship with the parents of all students in the class.  There are many ways this can be accomplished.

Email is a Great Way to Stay Connected

Most people have at least one email account.  Many people check their emails on a daily basis.  Keeping in contact with parents through email is a great and easy way to stay connected.  Some teachers send a weekly email to all parents notifying them of events happening in the class for the week.  In the past, many teachers sent weekly newsletters and this can be replaced with a weekly email.  

Phone calls may disrupt the day and it isn't fun to play phone tag.  Email is a great way to communicate back and forth.

Don't Wait until a Negative Situation to Contact Parents

It's important for teachers to make contact with parents within the first few weeks of school as an introduction.  It's also a good idea for teachers to contact parents when their child did something positive in the class.  Praising the child in class is a great idea, but many times the parents don't hear about these positive moments.

Too many times parents are only contacted when their child gets in trouble and this is not the right thing to do.  They do not look forward to teacher calls if they know they are only receiving bad news.  Make a point to send a quick email or note when the student did something positive in the class.

Encourage Parents to Visit and Volunteer in the Class

Sometimes parents may want to volunteer or visit, but are afraid to ask.  Teachers should make parents welcome to visit or volunteer in the class.  Children feel very proud when their parent comes in the class.  When a parent comes to spend time in the class, they are showing their child that education is important. 

When a parent visits the class, they feel connected to their child's education.  If the parents are able to see the teacher's teaching style it often helps when it comes to doing homework at home.

When Parents and Teachers Work Together the Everyone Benefits

Children learn best when parents and teachers work together.  If they both have the same goals in mind, the child will succeed in school.  When the parent and teacher try to discipline in similar manners, the child will see consistency and the results will be much better.  Although the child spends half the day at school, that child also spends the other half of the day at home.  Both places should match as close as possible.