The back to school season is upon us once again!
This year I will be embarking on a new adventure as a teacher – my oldest son is starting school. While I’ve always had the teacher’s perspective, now I see things through mom eyes. I want to avoid hovering, thinking my child does no wrong, and slapping a label on my child.
I want to be a breathe of fresh air for his amazing teacher and not a mom who is choking her with concerns so centered on my baby.
In order to get to that point (hopefully), I have interviewed a few teacher friends and have devised a list of good questions for parents to ask their child’s teacher or points to clue in on at “Meet the Teacher” night. (It is important to note they may answer some of these before you ask so remember to use your listening ears.)
Remember your child is one in a million to you, and your child’s teacher will try to view them that way, as well. However, it is sometimes quite difficult for your child’s teacher to give you detailed daily updates. Rule of thumb here is: no news is good news. Questions to consider:
- What’s the best way for a parent to contact the teacher?
- How does the teacher share important information with parents?
- Is there anything I can do to help make communication easier on you?
Teachers care for their students tremendously. Many give sacrificially to ensure each student is set up for success. I encourage you to consider seeking out ways to join in this effort if at all possible. This is an area teachers generally won’t share about without being prompted. So go ahead and ask. Questions to consider:
- Is there anything extra you need to help you or your class?
- Do you need any other school supplies that weren’t sent in?
- What is your favorite coffee? snack? store?
You are your child’s first teacher and your commitment to your child is invaluable! It is also a valuable lesson for your child to see you supporting other authority figures in their lives, even if you feel like you would do certain things differently. The way you speak about your child’s teacher will trickle into the way your child treats their teacher. Look for opportunities to show commitment to your child and their teacher this year. Questions to consider:
- What’s the best way to help my child succeed in this class?
- If my child is struggling with grades, what tutoring options are available?
- If my child is struggling behaviorally, how can we work together to problem solve?
Chances are at the end of your back to school, meet the teacher, open house night (whatever your school calls it!) your child’s teacher will ask if there are any questions. If you are like me, unless I have a few thoughtful questions ready I’ll just smile and shake my head politely. So jot these down before you go and maybe she will give you a smiley face sticker at the end of class.