Yesterday, I shared with you the way I typically communicate with parents when I see them face-to-face; however, we know that in reality we do not see many of our students' parents on a regular basis. Depending on who picks the child up from school or they ride the bus or daycare van, you may never see the parents. If this is the case, I have tips for this scenario too.
During my "life" as a teacher, I once had a mother of a student who was the "breadwinner" of her family. She worked a regular 8:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. job. Daycare picked up the child each afternoon. This doesn't promote communication as there an opportunity to talk. This is where I had to step out and take a little initiative. I would, at least monthly, call her cell phone and we would talk about her child's progress. (You can use the FREE Parent Contact Log to keep track of your communications with parents.) This mother was struggling as the wife of an abusive husband. There are so many times when teachers see these situations, but there's few opportunities to make an impact. I kept the lines of communication open with Mom and she willingly spoke to me each time on the phone. She was always so happy that I called her and was thinking about her child's growth and progress. Those 15 minutes I spent on the phone could have minimize my piles in the corner of my classroom, but I made a choice.
|Parent Contact Log|
P.S. The mother reported at the end of the year that she started taking the son to church and their whole world has changed.