What to Do Before, During, and After a Parent-Teacher Conference
Parent-teacher conferences are one of the best ways to stay involved in your child’s school life. During these meetings, lots of details can be discussed, shared, and learned from both the parent and the teacher.
It’s important that you make the most of these meetings to foster successful school performance in your child. Read on to find out what you should do before, during, and after a parent-teacher conference to make sure they are beneficial for everyone!
Before the Conference
- As soon as a parent-teacher conference is scheduled, mark it down on the calendar. Ask off from work if needed, so there are no conflicts in you making it to the meeting.
- Think about the questions or topics you want to discuss while at the conference. Look over recent tests, quizzes, and assignments. Make notes if there are any low grades you want to discuss.
- Talk to your child. Ask how school is going on a daily basis. Note any concerns he seems to have toward school, whether it be his teacher, classmates, or the work he is doing.
During the Conference
- Make sure you are on time for the parent-teacher conference, as most teachers schedule several meetings in a single day. Take a notepad and pen with you to take notes, as well as any you have made prior to the conference.
- Ask to see samples of your child’s work, if not readily available. Discuss how your child is learning best in the classroom, whether it be visually, more hands on, or after reading about a subject.
- Avoid going off tangent and discussing non-important issues like school fundraisers or upcoming events. This is the time to learn all about your child’s performance and progress in the classroom.
- Don’t forget to ask how your child is doing socially. How well does he get along with fellow classmates as well as teachers and administrators?
After the Conference
- Follow up with the teacher if there were any questions you forgot to ask, or didn’t think of at the time of the meeting.
- Look over the notes you took during the parent-teacher conference, and develop a plan on how you want to help your child succeed in school.
- Discuss what you learned during the meeting with your child. See if he has any disagreements with anything the teacher told you. Don’t turn this into a “he said, she said”, but it’s important that you, your child, and his teacher are all on the same page.
- Send a thank-you note to school with your child, letting the teacher know you appreciated her taking the time to speak with you.
Above all, be proactive and attentive when it comes to parent-teacher conferences. Prepare for the meeting, show up focused and ready to discuss your child’s performance and needs, and leave with plans to help your child succeed in school.