Our parent teacher conferences are coming up in a week and so I am starting to get prepared now. Even though this will be my 7th year teaching, I still get stressed out over conferences. It's so challenging to communicate to parents about how their kindergartener is doing in school in just 15 short minutes! Kindergarten parents also have tons of questions-especially if this is their first child in school, and I like to be able to address all of their questions and concerns. Of course we also have to go through the first quarter report card and I like to show lots of work samples, examples of assessments, and any little anecdotes I might have about the child.
Over the years I have had parents ask me how they can help their child at home, and I've often just given a quick tip or two-usually encouraging them to read lots of books at home! I also always have a few students that are still struggling with basic concepts like name writing and letter recognition at this point in the year and really like to encourage the parents of these students to work with me to support these skills at home.
Last year I finally got my act together and made a list of math tips and a list of literacy tips for parents. They are just quick one-page lists of ideas parents can try at home with their kindergartener. I tried my best to make many of the ideas fun. I handed these tip sheets to parents at the end of our conference and many really liked them.
Feel free to download these if you think your students' parents would find them useful. If you have any tips for successful parent-teacher conferences, I'd love to hear them!