School open houses are an important part of the start of the school year. They give parents the opportunity to meet their child’s teacher, see where their child will spend a large part of their day, and learn a bit about the upcoming school year. Parents play an important role in the academic success of their children, and an open house connects parents and teachers. As you prepare to attend your child’s open house, use the following tips to make the most of the experience.
Make it a Family Affair
If both parents are able to attend the open house, try to go together. This helps to create a united front and you both will know what is going on in the classroom. If your child is attending, have them introduce you to their teacher, show you their desk, and walk you around the classroom while telling you about different things that happen during the school day. When students see that you are interested and invested in the work that they do, it encourages them to want to work harder.
Share with the Teacher
There are two pieces of information that can help a teacher learn more about your child. First, let your child’s teacher know if there are areas in which your child struggles. The second piece of information you can share is a fact about your child that the teacher may not have known. Maybe your child has an interesting hobby, plays an instrument, or your family does something specific every weekend. This will help the teacher connect with your child.
This is your chance to find out about what your child will be doing in the classroom. Rather than waiting until parent teacher conferences, when your child may be struggling, reach out to the teacher now so you can be on top of things that will be going on in the classroom. Ask about important units, books and themes your child will be covering during the school year. This will allow you to be involved in what they are learning and ask them questions about these topics as your child is learning about them. Ask to see your child’s work area. Your child is going to spend around seven to eight hours here each day, so check it out. If they have their own desk, you could even leave an encouraging note that they might find during the next few days as a surprise.
Talk to Other Parents
Your child will be with their children for the whole year. The saying goes that it takes a village to raise a child, so get to know the other people in your child’s village.
Teachers will include information about class policies, contact information or websites. These can be valuable resources during the year when
you have questions about something that is going on in your child’s class.
Extra Helpful Hints
• Don’t monopolize the teacher’s time. Remember, there is a roomful of parents who also want to meet the teacher.
• If your child is nervous about school, this is a great chance to make them feel more comfortable and at ease. Let them know what you discuss with their teacher.
• If you can’t make the open house, reach out to the teacher through an e-mail and introduce yourself. Most teachers welcome the communication and often will fill you in regarding information you missed and attach any important documents that they went over.