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Back to School Night Basics (page 2)

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Updated on Jul 1, 2009

Fill Out the Paperwork
Many teachers hand out a questionaire for parents to fill out during Back to School Night. They'll want to gain some insight into your child's personality and how he learns. If the teacher doesn’t hand out a questionaire, consider writing something up yourself. It takes time to get to know 20 (or more) students. Take it upon yourself to write a note to your child’s teacher addressing any specific concerns you may have. For example, if your family has just had a major change happen such as a divorce, a move, illness, or a new sibling, you should share that information with the teacher as soon as possible. Information about your child’s personality is much appreciated as well. Maybe when your child gets angry or frustrated she needs some space before discussing the issue. A good teacher will figure it out soon enough, but a heads up is always nice. Just keep the note simple and to the point!

Sign On to Apprentice
Kindergarten teachers are notorious for pleading for parent help. And they mean it!  Kindergarten is one of the most hands-on, student centered, and messy grades there is. Back to School Night typically includes a signup sheet for classroom volunteers and many parents will grudgingly add their name to the list. Don't do it just to butter up the teacher. True, your presence in the room will be an enormous help to her and all the children in the class. But parents, it's good for you too!  Volunteering is an opportunity to get to really know how your child is doing: where she's struggling, where she shines, and everything in between. Plus, it's a great way to get to really know your child’s teacher, making him more available to you when you have questions or concerns. And last, but definitely not least, it's fantastic on the job training! A tremendous amount happens in kindergarten-- from learning to read, to learning to write. And you'll have a front row seat. You will learn the strategies your child’s teacher uses to help students grasp new concepts. Watching her teach will help you bring those concepts to life with your own child at home.

Kindergarten is a pivotal year. And your child's teacher is just one piece of the puzzle. As your child gets her feet wet this year with new skills like reading and writing, keep the learning going at home with fun activities that bring kindergarten skills to life.

Your child’s education is an important combination of home and school working together closely. Back to School Night is the first step in building a strong relationship between the two.

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