Mrs. Bee is having a Parent Involvement Linky Party. Hop on over and check it out!
I really want the parents of my students to be involved in our class. I want to keep them up to date with all the happenings in our classroom. Most of my parents are very busy working their jobs and taking care of their families. School is not a big deal for some of them. I try my best to communicate with them regularly.
Here are the things I did last year and I will do this year:
Classroom newsletter: This goes home every Friday. I really enjoy making these.
Newsletter Week 1
Website and Student Blog: I update my classroom website with spelling words and important information. I add pictures of us working in the room. Late last year I began a Student Blog. We will be using it more this year I hope. The kids really got excited about it. It provides a very authentic way to share their writing.
Take Home Folders: I do these every day. Sometimes it is difficult, but it really makes a difference with the behavior in my room. I also try to write an encouraging note in each student's folder at least once a week. This is what I staple into their folders every six weeks.
Behavior Chart 11-12
Open House and General Information Packet: We have an open house before school starts every year. It is a great time to meet the students and their families. They can drop off school supplies if they have them. I also let the students choose their desks for the first day if they come to Open House. We have a come and go type of open house, so I use it as a conversation time instead of a presentation time. I will be handing out these information packets. I will then put a copy in the mailbox of those students who do not come, that way all parents receive a copy.
Gen Info Packet
Calls Home and Postcards: I am going to make it a priority to make positive phone calls home this year. I wanted to last year, but I never made the time. I am going to buy, address, and stamp a class set of postcards so that I can write an encouraging note and mail it off whenever I see a student having a great day.
Class Parties: We have 2 parties a year and I love having the parents come. They get to see what our classroom is like and enjoy watching their kids interact with their classmates.
Dismissal: Most of my students last year were picked up by their parents. I love this because it is easy access to say a few words and let them see me every day. I am hoping that holds true this year.
Parent Conferences: We have a mandatory parent conference at the end of the 2nd six weeks. I use this time to really talk with parents about their child's progress. I give them lots of papers, show them many examples, and answer any questions they may have. I always get very nervous before these, but they turn out great. I am learning as I go, so this year I am going to concentrate on using less "Teacher speak."
Am I forgetting anything? I am going to go check out what everyone else is saying. =)