I have taught at the intermediate level for a few years now, well, 6 to be exact. Throughout this time, I have communicated with parents on a near weekly basis. Now I know, communicating with parents is nothing new to many of you but alas, I still seem to receive some interesting looks and push-back from colleagues when I say I send emails on a weekly basis to the folks/guardians of my homeroom INTERMEDIATE class. Such conversations are by no means filled with negativity but they do include thoughts of ‘our students should be sharing the info, not you’ or ‘does not not open a pandora’s box of communication with parents/guardians’ and so on and so forth.
Though the aforementioned ideas from colleagues may be true, I cannot help but think that the positive outcomes of weekly communication with parents/guardians at the intermediate level far outweigh any such thoughts.
The long standing adage ‘It takes a village to raise a child’ is perhaps at the centre of why I wish to communicate with parents/guardians. By sharing the big ideas of what we are doing on a weekly basis means parents/guardians might be able to share their own experiences or open a great door of possibility to their kiddo or even the whole class. The expertise and connections that parents can bring to a classroom is truly priceless. In fact, communication with parents has recently landed a fantastic opportunity for students in my school to be part of First Lego League.
My weekly emails look like the image below. They are simple, intentional, and relevant towards supporting student success. There are even times that videos, short articles, or images are shared within these emails that will help parents/guardians better understand what it is their kiddo is doing in class (and possibly at home).
If we wish for our students to succeed, communicating what is happening in our classrooms/schools with parents/guardians should be part of our regular practice even at slightly more spread out than my weekly efforts. The benefits of communication with folks for the sake of student success far outweigh that of any apprehensions that one might have.
On that note, I am happy to be back blogging. It was actually a parent I met during ‘Meet the Teacher’ night who so kindly noted their enjoyment on reading through some of my posts.
Keep communicating everyone however best you can; you never know what opportunities may arise from a simple email or note home.
Yours in learning,
The Enthusiastic Learner