7 Things To Tell the Teacher at the Beginning of the School Year

This (hot, hot) summer of course is moving quickly!   It's the end of August. 

So much to do.  I already have school forms to fill out.  The kids just got their hair cut for pictures.  Form and Fee day for Lincoln is tomorrow!  

(Okay, we haven't gone school shopping yet.  My boys hate trying on clothes.  And I dread crowded stores and staring blankly at mountains of school supplies!)

However, as I do every year - either before school or right after the start of school - I plan to talk to my kids' teachers.  For me, this is extremely important.   I do this to meet the teacher, talk about my child's learning style and their individual personaities, and voice any concern I have for the upcoming school year.  I also feel that sitting down with a teacher in person is a way to make myself more approachable to the teacher.  

I highly recommend that all parents do this with their kids' teachers.  I am a working mom.  However, this time of year, as busy as I am,  I make the time for this meeting.  

I also always try to remind myself of this one thing at the beginning of school:

As parents - we are the true experts of our kids. There is no one who can help a child's school and teacher succeed better than the child's parent.  In my opinion, communication and cooperation between parent and teacher is one of the best tools a school can use. 

Here is a wonderful and insightful article from schoolfamily.com:  7 Things to Tell the Teacher.   This article gives parents extemely helpful ideas about what to talk about.  I am copying directly from the web site. 


7 Things to Tell the Teacher

Health conditions: If your child is diabetic, uses an inhaler, is allergic to, or has a serious health condition, her teacher should know. It’s also helpful to let the teacher know whether your child has been diagnosed with conditions like ADHD, which may affect behavior and concentration.

Family issues: Fill in the teacher if your family is going through a major change that could affect your child, such as a divorce, a death in the family, or a move. Even if your child seems to have adjusted well, alert teachers so they can watch for behavioral changes.

Personality traits or behavior issues: Maybe your son is painfully shy and is worried about making friends at a new school. Or perhaps your kindergartner has been having tantrums at home and you’re concerned she’ll do the same at school. It’s best to make teachers aware of these issues before they become a problem at school.

Strengths and weaknesses: Your daughter is a star student in math but is embarrassed to read aloud. Your son loves language arts but struggles with science. If you tell teachers these things up front, they’ll have more time to help your children improve in the areas they need it most.
Learning style: You’ve spent years teaching your kids, from potty training to tying shoelaces, so you have a good idea of their learning styles. If your child learns better through hands-on activities than through listening to explanations, mention that to his teacher. Also share any teaching strategies that you’ve found work well with your child.
Study habits: Does your son speed through math homework but labor over reading assignments? Do your daughter’s grades suffer because she spends so much time at skating lessons? Tell teachers about your children’s study habits and any issues they face in completing the work. Teachers often can offer suggestions to make homework time go more smoothly.
Special interests: Knowing more about your child’s hobbies or interests can help the teacher forge connections in the classroom. Let the teacher know that your young son loves a particular comic book superhero and that your middle school daughter is a gifted painter.

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