(Posted 3/9/2020) To help everyone get the most out of conferences this week, we offer these three suggestions:
- Talk with your child ahead of time. Ask your child what is being prepared this week and what important topics will be coming up. Also find out which conferences they are looking forward to and if any are causing some anxiety.
- Come with questions. Just because these are student-involved (and in the older grades, student-led) does not mean that parents should be observers. Some questions you might consider:
- What made you decide to share this piece of work with me?
- How do you feel when you’re asked to explain your math thinking?
- What do you think about where you sit in your classes?
- What makes you most excited about coming to school?
- How might I better help this team that’s dedicated to your learning? (You can ask student and teacher(s) this question)
- How might I better support you at home?
- Make a follow-up plan. Conferences help all of us take time to reflect on student progress, but these conversations also should continue throughout the year. If you run out of time during a particular conference, ask for a time to meet again soon to speak more. If you craft an action plan for your child to address a particular challenge, put a note in your planner to email everyone in a few weeks and ask how it is going. And when you have additional questions during the year, reach out and ask.