Building better relationships between parents and teachers
Posted by Hlengiwe Zwane on 15 May 2023, 15:05 SAST
View our resources on parent-teacher collaboration
It has been proven that positive connections between parents and teachers can improve a child's academic career, social competencies and emotional well-being. Collaborating as partners, parents and teachers enhance communication, strengthens relationships and cultivates skills to effectively support students behaviours and learning.
Start with Communication. Communication between home and school. Like any relationship in life, communication between the parent and your child’s teacher is key.
Communicate with your child’s teacher early on and throughout the school year. Start by letting him/her know you want to play your part in your child’s education.
Discuss with your child’s teacher on what the best ways to communicate. This can be as simple as sending notes to school with your child, leaving a voice message for the teacher, emailing important information or other methods unique to your situation.
The best kind of communication is open, clear, constructive and timely. Frequent, two-way communication is important to stay informed of what is happening at school.
Attend meetings with questions and observations about your child’s efforts and behaviours, not just their grades and achievements. Communicate with your child’s teacher and let them know what your child’s strengths and challenges are.
Here tackle opportunities and experiences that you provide at home to support the child’s learning.
Ask about and suggest ways to work with your child at home to encourage their learning for a successful school year. Creating routines for homework, providing additional learning materials, reading with your child, and encouraging healthy habits to contribute to their success in school.
Establish methods to ensure that you and the teacher are “on the same page” with regard to plans and expectations. A partnership that sends a consistent message to your child and lets them know that you and their teacher together support their learning.
The last component of establishing a healthy teacher and partnering relationship is collaboration. Collaboration will be easier if communication is frequent, and you consistently create opportunities for your child’s learning. A collaborative, cooperative partnership focuses on specific, positive strategies to help the child achieve the best of his or her potential.
Try to understand teachers’ goals and expectations for your child, and let teachers know about your goals. Communicate about how you can be a partner to help your child achieve them.
Plan and solve issues that may arise. If the relationship and communication channels are developed early, it will be much easier to address challenges if they appear. Collaborative planning involves acknowledging the need to work together to address a concern.