Getting the Most out of Your Parent-Teacher Interviews at the Elementary Level

The majority of schools have parent-teacher interviews after the first report card comes out, usually in November. Parent-teacher interviews are a valuable time for you to discuss your child’s report card  as well as offer any other input you have about your child and his or her school experience. By this time in the year, the teacher will have had a chance to get to know your child, observe him or her in the classroom social environment, and will have assessed your child’s academic progress since the beginning of the year. Also, if your child works with a resource teacher or a special education assistant, you can request that they attend the meeting if possible.

 

In order to get the most out of the meeting, you could prepare by jotting down any questions or comments you have ahead of time, and referring to the list during the interview. Read over your child’s report card, and if anything is unclear or you would like to hear more details, make a note to ask the teacher about it. Often teachers will show you examples of your child’s work during the interview, but if they don’t, just ask. You can often gain a lot of insight into your child’s strengths and weaknesses by looking at their math or spelling notebook, or reading a creative writing piece. If you have any information about your child that you think the teacher does not know, the interview is a good time to discuss it. For example, if you have recently had your child’s eyes or ears tested, or if you are concerned about recess or lunchtime incidents, share that information with the teacher. Before the interview, you can also ask your child if there is anything that they would like you to discuss with the teacher.

 

Thinking ahead of time about what you would like to ask the teacher and what you would like to share about your child will help you have a productive and positive parent-teacher interview.

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