An interesting article and a good read. I think I agree with most of them. ;P And I thought I’d have fun and add a few things I wish my class parents knew…
- Be honest with yourself, with the teacher (me), and with your child: This is so broad so an attempt to expound on it is too big of a task on a blog…but, just like in any relationship (friendship, spousal relationship, co-worker) honesty saves people a lot of time and grief. Honesty about your child’s progress, about a program at school, how you are with your child, if you are able to handle your child etc. (Tactfulness is implied) – To be perfectly honest, an experienced teacher can always detect dishonesty in most cases…
- Show you are interested and get involved in your child’s education in a way that you can: I guess every parent is different in how much time they have depending on what kind of job they have..some jobs require much traveling, some jobs work in shifts…but, I truly believe that no matter how young a child is, they can sense it, if their parents are making an effort to invest in their school life and education. I know and have witnessed the huge impact this has on the child’s attitude towards school and just their general well-being. So do it. Do your best not to travel when it’s your child’s open house or at least volunteer for one of the events or field trips.
- Develop a good relationship with me (the teacher): I see this in the same category as maintaining a friendly relationship with your clients or co-workers in a corporate world. You may not always like them or agree with them, but living in peace with them will not only make your life easier but will benefit you. Whether you agree with the teacher’s style is not an issue. This is for the well-being of your child. Your attitude towards the teacher will influence your child’s attitude towards the teacher which will also affect his attitude in class. Make an effort to use positive language about the teacher and appear supportive of what’s going on in the classroom. (I hope it is understood that this is different from supporting a teacher who display integral issues. But, even in that case, I think being discreet and tactful about it will help the child know how to respond appropriately.)
- Develop a good relationship with other parents in the class: I also see this as common sense. It helps you to be informed of what’s going on and gives you a more whole picture of the classroom as well.
- Be concerned for the school as a whole, not just the class your child is in: I guess this is along the lines of being concerned only for what’s relevant to you in terms of governmental system as opposed to the entire country – its policies, structure/system etc. The effect might not always be obvious or immediate in the classroom, but the culture of the school and where its headed has a dramatic effect in individual classrooms and teachers for that matter.
I based this on what I would do as a parents and also on what I’ve experienced as a teacher and moments when I thought, ‘I would never do that as a parent,’ or ‘I definitely want to be a parent like him/her.’
There’s always more…so stay tuned. 😉