Building Bridges

Taking time to get to know parents sends an important message: We’re a team with a shared goal of helping students have a successful school year. Plus, parents have invaluable insight that can help us better meet students’ learning needs. Forging strong connections with parents is an ongoing process—and it begins with the first days and weeks of school.
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What Kind of Teacher Are You?

"What kind of teacher are you?" A parent whose child will be in my class this year asked me that a few days ago. It was an honest question, and one I've…
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What to Say to Parents Now

I can't begin to describe how important the exchanges I've had with my children's teachers and principal have been to me this week. At various times, each of them reached out to…
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Talking with Parents about Problems

Conversations about a child who is struggling in school are stressful for parents and teachers. Both parties may experience feelings of anger, fear, frustration, and confusion, along with a sense of inadequacy,…
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What Parents Wish Teachers Knew

Recently, I had the exciting opportunity to be interviewed by Katie Couric in the ABC studio in New York City for her weekly online video series, Katie's Take. The topic: "What Teachers…
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School-Home Communication Strategies

As educators, we know that communication between school and home is hugely important to a child’s success in school. When school leaders, teachers, and other school staff respect parents* and share infor­mation…
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Families’ Hopes and Dreams

If we really believe the statement “Parents are partners in their children’s education,” then we have to make developing relationships with parents a top priority. An important first step in building these…
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Investing in Parents During the First Six Weeks of School

Teachers work hard during the first six weeks of school to get to know their students and to establish a safe and welcoming classroom environment. This early investment makes the whole school…
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