Partnering with your child’s teacher can have a powerful impact. When you and your child’s teacher have a good relationship and communicate regularly, it’s easier to work together to help your child thrive in school.
How Working With the Teacher Can Help You
Working with the teacher is one of the best ways to support your child’s learning. You share a common goal: Providing the best educational experience for your child.
You know your child best. But partnering with the teacher can give you an even better understanding of your child. It gives you the chance to share concerns about what’s happening at home that the teacher may or may not be seeing in the classroom.
For example, the teacher might tell you that your child gets frustrated about assignments and says things like “Why do we have to learn this?” You may be seeing the same frustrated reaction at home when it comes to homework.
By keeping each other informed, you can come up with consistent ways to respond to frustration. Partnering makes it easier to create a common message and to help your child understand the point of an assignment.
How Working With You Can Help the Teacher
Understanding what your child has trouble with (and your child’s strengths) helps the teacher develop a more personalized approach to learning. It helps the teacher predict what might be difficult for your child and figure out what kind of support would help.
It’s always helpful for teachers to get more insights into their students. Their time with them is limited—it can take a new teacher awhile to get to know your child. The information you share helps move this process along.
Keep in mind, the more teachers know about their students, the better they can engage them in learning. For instance, if your child struggles with writing and the teacher knows your child is interested in dogs, the teacher might infuse that interest into a writing assignment.
How Your Partnership With the Teacher Can Help Your Child
Building a partnership with your child’s teacher benefits your child, too. Knowing that school and home are working together can be a confidence booster for kids.
Having shared expectations with the teacher and a common language around challenges helps kids feel like everybody is on the same page. And that can make life a lot less confusing for them.
Also, if you’re working with the teacher, your child may be more willing to self-advocate and ask for help. Self-advocacy leads kids to be more empowered and independent learners.
Watch as a mom describes what she learned about these conversations.
How to Start Partnering With Your Child’s Teacher
If you’re unsure how to start partnering with your child’s teacher, parent-teacher conferences are a good time to get the relationship going. But if you’d like to speak to the teacher sooner, you can also call, drop off a back-to-school letter, or send an introduction email. It’s also good to ask teachers what their preferred mode of communication is.