Sunday, August 19, 2012

Communication with Parents

I admit that I have not always been the best at communicating what goes on in the classroom with parents!  Coming from special education I had LOTS of parent contact, but it was in the form of IEP meetings, discussions of behaviors, and creating plans to help the student be more successful in the general education setting. 

I had a newsletter, but not for parents... my newsletter was to communicate with the various schools, assistants, and other programs and their staff that I worked closely with in the two schools I managed.  (Wow, just thinking about this again makes me soooo happy I'm not dealing with it this year!)

As I embark into the world of general education, I've been thinking about what I have wanted to know as a parent.  My daughter would tell me everyday that she did nothing at pre-school!  I tried to re-phrase things - What was your favorite part of the day?  What did you work on during reading time? But still got the nothing or I don't know answers only to find out later that they were studying Mt. Vesuvius and had made a volcano and errupted it during class (hmm, doesn't sound like nothing to me!!!)

I thought about a newsletter, but honestly, as a parent I read a few and when it's the same format each week I just don't read it anymore (bad parent! bad!) They rarely tell me anything I really want to know.  What do I want to know?  I want to know what work my kids are producing!  How are they learning math?  What do they do doing reading time?  What is my child doing in that classroom all day?  Are they sitting around doing worksheets or are they errupting volcanoes and working in groups? 

So, this year I started a classroom blog.  Click  <here> to see the beginning stages of it.  It has all of the general information that a parent may need to access during the year.  My goal is to post pictures, videos, etc. of what the students are working on, so that parents get an idea of what their child is actually doing during the day!  I think the kids will be excited to be able to show their parents what we've posted also.  Hopefully, engaging both students and parents!

I posted this part earlier, but it ties in so I'm posting it again!  I had magnets made through Vista Print that has all of my contact information and the address for the blog.

Do you have a classroom blog or website?  How do you find it best to communicate with parents?  As a parent, what information do you want from your children's teachers?