The beginning of the year marks the time for review of the past year and the setting of resolutions for the new year ahead. With the new school year just around the corner, now is the time to set goals. Not all your goals need to be set around school children. One crucial and often overlooked relationship is the one you have with parents.
Establishing a healthy relationship with parents should be high on your agenda. Research has shown that healthy teacher-parent relationships can influence a students’ wellbeing, academic scores and social capabilities.
Here are a few tips to improve the relationship you have with parents:
Communication is key
Parents want to know what is happening inside the classroom. Be sure to share updates via a newsletter or print out to keep parents in the know.
In meetings, be sure to ask the parent about their child’s preference for learning, and ask what they’d like their child to learn or achieve during the school year. Finding out as much information as possible will help you to adapt your teachings where possible.
One great way to know if you are communicating well is to ask for feedback from parents. You could create a quick survey and email it to parents or directly ask for feedback in your meetings with them. The bonus to this exercise is that you can ask to share positive feedback via the school’s website or social media channels. With negative feedback, learn from it and adapt your teaching style appropriately.
Let parents know specifically how they can help you. Give clear instructions, i.e., “ask your child how they came up with the answer.” Collaborating with parents is the best way to build on the student’s strengths and address their weaknesses.