Early in my career, parent-teacher conferences were my least favorite thing about teaching. Let’s be honest; they terrified me. Why? I’m not sure. Maybe it was a lack of confidence in myself or the fact that I had a really challenging parent during my first year. Likely, it was simply a fear of the unknown. Parent conferences do not have to be stressful and frightening. Remember, parents are often just as nervous as you are! As long as you are organized, prepared, and respectful- your conferences can be one of the best times of the whole school year. For real!
Ask Questions Before the Conference
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Allow the parents to lead the conversation.
My best conference advice is to allow the parents to lead the conversation.
What are they worried about? What are they seeing at home? It is truly eye-opening. When you let the parents do the talking and you do most of the listening. That’s not to say you shouldn’t be prepared to share assessment results and other important information. You need to have information to share and a general plan of how to convey what you see at school. However, you should use that information to support your conversation. Conferences will become a true conversation about how students are performing at school and how parents can continue to support their student’s education. This helps parents to feel like part of the team.
Color Code All the Things
Organize All the Things
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What is your best conference advice?