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Monday, October 10, 2011

School Bell: Parent Conference Tips

Last Monday I talked about assesing the start your children have made this year and encouraged conversation with his or her teacher.  So, we have already talked about the importance of sharing the home perspective with the teacher on school in general and on the homework front as well. Here are three key tips to keep in mind as you prepare for that conference.

Bring specific questions.
"How is he doing?" is less helpful than "What area does he need to work on?" "Who does she usually buddy up with for team projects?" instead of "Is she getting along with others okay?" These can help you be more effective helping your child with both studying and social concerns.

Prioritize and Make a list.
Having a list of key things you want to cover or questions you want answered is one of the best ways to be sure you don't get sidetracked during the conference or stuck talking in platitudes and generalities.  Most conferences are limited to around 20 minutes. The teacher will have information to share, so decide your top two priorities and write them down to make sure you cover them!

If you can't get to everything, make an appointment to continue the discussion, chances are there is another parent waiting in the hallway for their 20 minutes.

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