Why Parent-Teacher Communication is Important?
Parent-teacher communication is more than just a process of helping improve your student’s or child’s grade. When a child’s parents and teachers communicate better, it leads in better nurturing of their social development.
That’s because educating a child is not the school’s responsibility alone. There needs to be ample communication between the home and the school to foster a safe learning environment for the children.
Here is some important information to help you understand the importance of parent-teacher communication and its effect on your students’ development. We have also included some communication strategies that both parents and teachers can use to establish effective school-home communication.
How Parent-Teacher Relationships Impact Students
Positive parent-teacher relationships significantly impact students’ success. Here are some of the most common advantages students experience when their parents and teachers work as a team.
Proactive Hard Work
When students experience a positive connection with their parents and teachers, they automatically start becoming more invested in their classroom goals. This happens because they understand that both parties are working towards their development, and they must also work hard to reach their academic goals.
And when that hard work translates to better grades and holistic development, students feel more confident sharing their study or life issues with their parents or teachers. This creates a healthy relationship between both parties.
Respect For Teachers
Students are usually observant. When they notice that their teachers respect their parents and are proactive about the happenings in the classroom, they develop a higher level of respect for their teachers. This helps them follow school instructions better and stay excited about sharing their successes with their parents.
Easier Problem Solving
Whether students face issues in their coursework or their day-to-day activities, if they don’t communicate it to their family or teachers, it can lead to poor academic performance. But when relationships are strong, students don’t hesitate to ask questions.
If students know that their teachers and parents are a team and are on their side no matter what, they will have the confidence to overcome obstacles and ask for help when need be.
Communication is a social skill that is passively learned. Students rely on their active environment to observe how their peers and elders communicate. If they see a positive link between home and school through well-developed communication channels, they are sure to absorb it and learn from it. This helps them have successful interactions with their classmates, teachers, and parents.
When a student scores well in a test, wins an award, or gets accepted into a college, it’s because their teachers and parents worked hard to provide a conducive environment to help the student thrive.
Parents and teachers need to collaborate and celebrate their success because it motivates them to do better in the future. And this can only happen if parents and teachers are on good communication terms with each other.
Communication Strategies For Teachers
Teachers must understand that parents can serve as a valuable asset in their children’s learning process. If you cultivate a meaningful relationship with your students’ families, you will gain added cooperation and better academic success. So, here are some ways you can reach out to parents to build a relationship with them.
The first thing to do is develop a system that you can use to keep your communication with parents consistent. Whether sending weekly progress reports or a journal with daily highlights or take-home homework handouts, the system must be effective and unvarying. You can also share monthly announcements on student progress to keep the parents in the loop.
One great way to streamline communication with parents and students is to clearly outline what is expected in the classroom. At the beginning of the school year, teachers should send these expectations and practices to the students’ families for clarity. This approach of committing to systems and communicating them clearly will help both parents and students trust the teachers better.
As a teacher, you should find ways to include parents in school activities that surpass formal parent-teacher meets and annual functions. You can invite parents to help you on special projects with students for a day or take them on educational trips along with students.
Teachers can also hold an annual open house event and invite parents to visit their children’s classrooms and spend time in the library or the cafeteria.
Hosting curriculum nights is another great idea. Having parents around once in a while not only positively impacts their child’s school experience but also gives you a chance to build a relationship with them.
Don’t miss any chance to receive feedback from parents. In fact, you should seek parent feedback as much as you can. That’s because parents know their children in ways that teachers can’t. Having parents highlight their child’s strengths, goals, and vision for the school year will help you nurture their child better at school.
You can also do half-yearly surveys to receive feedback on classroom practices. This will help you course-correct if need be and improve the overall experience for the students. Moreover, reflecting on feedback with the parents is another great way to strengthen bonds.
Patience And Empathy
As teachers, you must avoid assuming that a parent is careless about their child’s education because they missed a parent-teacher meeting or couldn’t return your call. Parenting can sometimes be a task, and teachers should be more empathetic about it.
When you understand a parent’s plight and make an effort to get in touch with them by prioritizing their time, it sends them a positive message that enforces great bonding. It also opens doors for them to participate in their child’s schooling more actively.
Communication Strategies For Parents
As a parent, you are your child’s greatest teacher and model. So, you must take appropriate steps to foster a feeling of community for your child between home and school. The first thing to do is get involved in their schooling and put in the time to communicate with teachers.
Here are some great tips for you to accomplish that.
Consideration For Schedule
Teaching is a busy job, just like parenting. Teachers are usually swamped with classes and meetings and whatnot. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t communicate with them but that you should discuss which communication channel works best for them. Address these – Would they like you to schedule a call in advance? Are they open to talking through email or text messages?
Another thing to keep in mind is that they have multiple students learning from them simultaneously, which means many parents want to speak to them throughout the school year. You can be considerate of their time by refraining from calling or texting them daily or sending multiple emails to ask questions that are not urgent.
Preparedness For Meetings
Parent-teacher meetings are a great way for you to strike a connection with your child’s teacher. To get the most out of a meeting, make sure you are well-prepared for it. List down all the questions you would like to ask them and keep it handy when you attend the meeting.
Make sure you don’t just talk about troubles and issues that your child is facing. You should also ask them for ways you can help your child learn better at home.
If you cannot attend the meeting, don’t just forget about it and wait for the next one. Be proactive and ask whether you can reschedule it or attend one online.
Don’t forget to show your child’s teacher that you care by making small gestures in the right direction. These can include adding comments to a workbook, sending appreciation emails, or volunteering in the classroom. You can also make time to greet the teachers when you drop off or pick up your child from the school.
You should make time to meet your children’s new teachers at the very beginning of the school year. During these meetings, you should share your child’s student report cards, intervention documents, or any other meeting notes that can help their teachers understand your child better. The more student history a teacher has, the better they can plan for that student.
Don’t just communicate with your children’s teachers when they call you for a conference. Make sure you read and respond to school correspondence regularly. Teachers often send notes and letters to parents to help parents stay updated on classroom goals. Take advantage of that and use it to form a relationship with the teacher so you can help your child learn better.
The Bottom Line
So, please read up on it and put in that extra effort to form a healthy partnership with your child’s teacher or your student’s family to nurture the future minds in the best way possible.