September 2004

Building Parent Partnerships

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Open Communication - Open your door and welcome parents to visit, observe, and volunteer. Listen to parent's concerns and criticisms. If there is a problem, encourage the parents to volunteer and be a part of the solution!

Parent Support - With our mobile society, many parents don't have the support of a family or spouse. Offer workshops, support groups, videos, or books on topics of interest, such as discipline, reading, nutrition, sibling rivalry, and so forth.




Take Home Backpacks -
Create a backpack full of books, poems, and activities that children can do at home with their parents.
Make several and let children take turns checking them out.
(One teacher shared with me that she created take home "lunch boxes" with books, play dough, and small motor activities. She included a little snack - raisins, crackers, etc- for children to enjoy after they completed the activity!)

Surprise Phone Call - Surprise your parents with a phone call at work or in the evening during the first few weeks of school. Reassure them about their child's adjustment, special qualities, and how pleased you are to have them in your classroom.

Party Time - Plan parties for parents, grandparents, and other family members. Arrange open houses, pot luck dinners, plays, and other socials. Muffins with mom, doughnuts with dad, and Grandparent's day are always appreciated!

Happy Grams - Send home positive comments and notes about children's successes. Parents will also enjoy hearing anecdotal stories or receiving photographs.)

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