Relationship Coach Matt Townsend shares some thoughts to help you make the most of your time with your students’ teachers.
Totally up to you?
If you think they’re good, they are?
You make them wastes or worth its.
They help you stay on topic of their academics, but more importantly it communicates you’re paying attention.
Communication is what you make it?
Remember everything you do communicates something.
If you don’t show up for conferences what does that say?
You don’t care.
You’re too busy.
You’re kids don’t need the help
You don’t value education.
PTC are excellent ways to learn more about your children.
1. Are they social? Do they have friends?
2. Do they listen?
3. Do they respect the teacher?
4. Do they get along with other people?
5. Who are their friends?
6. What are their academic gifts or talents?
7. How could/should I be steering my child to their talents?
The bigger issue of communicating with your teacher.
Kids Want Accountability
Direct Open communication with your teachers ensures that they kids can’t divide and conquer.
o Try to talk to the teacher with the child present. That way everyone is hearing what everyone is saying.
o Don’t just believe one side.
o Never bad mouth a teacher to your child.
Assume you don’t fully understand
The biggest assumption about communication is that it is taking place.
Remember you’re not getting all of the data.
The kids aren’t remembering everything or don’t have context of the teacher.
Remember you both should have the same goals with the teacher.
Those goals should be discussed
“Townsend’s don’t do math” example.
Be clear and make sure their ideas are clear
Remember your roles
Their job is to teach, yours is to parent, discipline and manage your child.
Don’t always believe your kid. Don’t always believe your teacher.
Use All Means to Communicate
Use parent teacher conferences, school fundraisers, PTA meetings, assemblies, find any reasons to get to their school class.
Drop in or help out in class. See the child in the setting that might be causing problems.
Have emails forwarded to phones or text messages that an email has arrived.
Get online to check your children’s grades regularly
Don’t be afraid of the teacher…like old days.
Remember they don’t get paid overtime, even when they already work it, so respect their time.
Respect their workload.
Become the change you seek in your child’s class…don’t just talk about it.
You will talk more if you are more present.
You’ll also see the other perspective more when you’re in the classroom more.
Understand their perspective first.
Don’t play mama bear.
Remember that they’re your partners
You both want what’s best for your children.
I don’t care how much you know until I know how much you care.
How do you stay in contact with your child’s teacher?
58%: Notes in backpack
57%: At parent-teacher conferences
31%: At drop-off or pick-up from school
1%: Through class parents.
Who initiates the contact?
90%: I do
29%: The teacher
What are the topics of communication?
68%: In-class academics
44%: Upcoming events
35%: Social adjustment
19%: School trips
How would you rate your communication with your child’s teacher?
7%: Needs Improvement
Are there topics you would like to bring up to the teacher, but don’t?
If yes, why?
52%: Concerns about being judged
37%: Not sure if the issue is appropriate
33%: Time constraints
• I don’t want the teacher to take it out on my child, or for my child to be singled out or targeted unfairly. Sometimes my child begs me to not say anything.
• I often feel she is unapproachable or not interested in certain subjects.
• She doesn’t take calls during the day and can’t seem to return calls later. Communicating by notes limits the conversation to absolutely necessary work.