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Strategy #2: To foster ongoing two-way communication…design interactive parent-teacher conferences

Story:  Stephanie was feeling proud of how well she was getting to know her fifth graders and their families. By mid-October several parents had already come to the classroom to share information about family traditions. Students were eager to contribute their favorite family recipes to their class book and bring a sample for the food-tasting festival held by the three fifth-grade classes. As time drew near to prepare for parent conferences, Stephanie was feeling uncertain and overwhelmed about where to begin. She asked Mona, her mentor, “In just 30 minutes, how do I help parents understand their child’s progress? What if they ask questions that I’m not prepared to answer? How do I bring up some of the behavior issues that I’m working on with a few students? And what if those parents don’t come? Wow, where do I begin?”

Talk about…

  • What are important goals for parent conferences?
  • How can Stephanie build upon the two-way communication she has already established with families?
  • How can Stephanie use the 30-minute conference to work toward her goals?

The Parent conferences tool can help Stephanie and Mona work out a plan.