Every parent has a different perspective of a parent-teacher conference. If you are a first-timer, you might hardly have any idea about it. You might wonder what would transpire between the teacher and you. Or what new, either good or bad, you’ll learn about your child from the teacher. This is reason enough for any parent to get nervous about a parent-teacher conference. Some might even dread it or consider it a time-consuming process in the middle of a busy day. However, a parent-teacher conference is anything but that.
The parent-teacher conference is your chance to know about the different aspects of your child’s personality. Children do not exhibit all aspects of their behavior when they are with their parents. It is common for them to behave differently in different environments, especially in school when they are with their peers. And, to lay a solid foundation of the right attitude and values in your child’s right upbringing, your child’s teacher plays a great role. Based on this principle, it is precisely how a parent-teacher conference is designed. So, if you’ve just got an invite to attend your child’s parent-teacher conference, here’s how you can prepare for it:
1. Draw A Prior List Of Questions
There are many things you’d want to know about your child from his/her teacher. But all those nagging questions might not occur to you at that precise moment. So, make a list of such questions as and when they occur to you. Here is a list of some common ones:
- Your child’s academic performance
- His/her relationship with peers at school
- Interest in activities other than academics such as painting, sports, etc.
- What are your child’s areas of development
- What skill your child excels at
- How can you, as a parent, reinforce positive learning attitude in your child
These are basic questions that every parent can ask the teacher. However, depending upon the scenario or recent incidents, you can include more specific ones. Like, if your child is showing any drastic change in behavior lately, you can inquire about any incidences of bullying. Or if your child has shown a remarkable improvement in his/her grades, discuss with the teacher the possible reasons that could have led to it.
2. Be A Patient Listener
Now that you have a list of questions, you might be eager to ask them too. However, remember to let the teacher speak first. Patiently listen to the teacher when she’s sharing her assessment of your child. Don’t interrupt her or intimidate her. Only when she’s done, you can shoot your questions. If there is something that isn’t clear to you, don’t hesitate to ask for clarification.
3. Accept The Teacher’s Suggestions
Usually, teachers are very cautious while sharing the child’s feedback with their parents. This is because some parents can get easily offended, especially if negative feedback is involved. You need to understand that the teacher does not have a hidden agenda. In fact, she is professionally trained to make honest assessments about your child’s overall performance and behavior at school. Even where negative feedback is involved, it comes from an honest intention to genuinely help your child improve in areas where he/she is lagging.
Make It A Team Effort
The whole idea of a parent-teacher conference is to focus on your child’s overall personality development. There are certain personality traits that your child exhibits at home. And then, there are others which your child exhibits at school depending upon the situation. Thus, it is important for both the teacher and parents to share their observations to help the child improve. So, when you are discussing your child, remember that it is a team effort. This mutual interaction will only help to further bring out the best in your child.
Now that you know how to prepare for a parent-teacher conference, we hope that things go really well for you. After all, between you and the teacher, your child’s future is in safe hands!