Friday, February 12, 2010

Parent Teacher Conferences

Good ol' parent-teacher conferences. . . the time of year often dreaded by both students and teachers, and some parents too-depending on the news they receive. It's a crazy time for those of us who are also in the middle basketball season, with the added stress of preparing progress reports. (I'll be honest though. . . I don't mind so much. I actually enjoy having a bit of a chat with the parental units. They always give me some added insight into just why their children act the way they do.)

Anyway, I just thought I'd post some random thoughts (and advice) about parent-teacher conferences.

1. Teachers do not want to hear that "_____________ wasn't my favorite subject either." It's not a good excuse for why your kid isn't turning in his homework.
2. The phrase, "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree," is applicable (in both good and bad ways) more in this one day than any other.
3. The parents of the students who are struggling are rarely the parents who show up for conferences.
4. If your student has an A in a class, the teacher doesn't really need to hear a speech about why he/she should be receiving an A+. They're doing FINE, believe me; I'm the teacher.
5. Just because a student CAN do the work doesn't mean he/she WILL do it.
6. A few positive comments (for teachers and parents) can do wonders.
7. When your class is a graduation requirement (like mine), parents take you more seriously when you say the diploma is on the line. . . Don't order those announcements yet!
8. Bring the hand sanitizer and do some facial stretching beforehand. You're going to shake a lot of hands and smile a lot.
9. We also don't want to hear, "So, when is my kid ever going to use this again?" Believe me, they'll use English. Communication, reading, writing, and general personal skills are important. I promise.
10. Thank a teacher when you have the opportunity. They work hard.

Take it or leave it, but there you go. See you at graduation. . . hopefully. :)

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