How to make parent teacher conferences successful


7 tips and tools to make parent-teacher conferences more productive.

  • 1. Make a schedule and stick to it. One of the most difficult aspects of these conferences for parents, especially working parents, is scheduling.
  • 2. Create a meeting agenda and share it with parents.
  • 3. Offer the option for video conferencing.
  • 4. Solicit parent input before a meeting.
  • 5. Create student portfolios and display student work.

Mastering the Parent-Teacher Meeting: Eight Powerful Tips
  1. Be Proactive. …
  2. Be Welcoming. …
  3. Explain Objectives and Expectations. …
  4. Be Prepared. …
  5. Create an Action Plan. …
  6. Use the Good-Bad-Good Sandwich. …
  7. Don’t Tolerate Abuse. …
  8. Keep Lines of Communication Open.


What are the benefits of Parent Teacher Conferences?

These tips can help you make the most of those important meetings:

  • In the weeks ahead of a conference, check in with kids about how they’re doing on homework and in each subject. …
  • Ask if there are questions or issues your child wants you to discuss with the teacher.
  • Plan to bring something to take notes with (paper and pen or a laptop or other device).

More items…

Why Parent-Teacher Conferences are important?

A parent-teacher conference is a great opportunity to:

  • discuss your child’s progress
  • share your child’s strengths and needs
  • work with the teacher to help your child do well in school

Why are parent teacher conferences important?

Why Parent-Teacher Conferences Are Important

  • Call or write a note to set up an appointment to discuss your concerns. …
  • Find out in advance how much time you will have. …
  • Talk to your child ahead of time to find out if there is anything she would like you to discuss during the meeting. …
  • Make a list of questions and don’t be afraid to ask them. …

More items…

What is teacher parent meeting?

Parent teacher meeting is an opportunity to exchange observation of a child with each other. Sharing daily experience and observation provide a wider prospect for parent and teacher to plan, prepare and execute planning for better learning outcome of a child.


What makes for an effective parent-teacher conference?

On the invitation, remind parents that they’ll be able to ask questions, because an effective parent-teacher conference is a two-way conversation about students. You might also want to remind parents to be respectful of other parents’ time, and be clear that time slots won’t be extended if parents arrive late.

How can parent-teacher conferences be improved?

15 Tips for Leading Productive Parent-Teacher ConferencesOffer a flexible conference schedule. … Prepare, prepare, prepare. … Arrange for a translator if needed, and find a way to connect. … Be aware of your body language. … Sit side-by-side. … Share real stories and student work. … Include the positive. … Create clear goals.More items…

How do you motivate parents to go to parent-teacher conferences?

Boost Attendance 1. Deliver a warm invitation to all of your students’ parents and/or guardians by email and paper to set a welcoming tone. 2. Schedule a “hook” activity prior to the conference that will encourage parents to attend, be engaged, and even look forward to the event.

How do I ace my parent-teacher conference?

Parent-teacher conference season is usually nervewracking for everyone….18 ways to ace your parent-teacher conferencesFeel comfortable. … Arrange desks and chairs intentionally. … Create a relaxing atmosphere. … Be ready to greet the parents. … Consider including the student in the conference. … Start and end well.More items…•

What parents should say at parent-teacher conferences?

Parent-Teacher Conference ChecklistsAsk your child how she feels about school.Ask your child if there is anything that he wants you to talk about with his teacher.Tell your child that you and the teacher are meeting to help her.Make a list of topics that you want to talk about with the teacher.More items…

How do you encourage parents to attend school meetings?

How to increase parent involvementOnline advice videos. Parents and teachers can share ideas via web videos on your school’s website. … A dedicated blog and online calendar. … Use social media at your school to connect to parents. … Home visits and parent/teacher conferences. … Family nights. … Volunteer Opportunities.

What do you say in PTM?

During the conferenceBe on time. … Be yourself. … Stay calm. … Ask for explanations of anything you don’t understand. … Ask the most important questions early in the conference. … Respectfully discuss differences of opinion. … Create an action plan. … Thank the teacher for meeting with you.

What do you talk about at a parent teacher conference?

10 Things You Must Discuss in Parent-Teacher ConferencesIn Class Progress. A discussion during a conference begins with in-class progress. … Academic Expectations. This conversation will focus on academic progress. … Long-term Goals. … Special Needs. … Medical Needs. … Student Assessments. … Discuss Strengths. … Discuss Areas of Needs.More items…

What should you not do at a parent teacher conference?

10 Things Not to Say at a Parent Teacher Conference“We don’t read at home.”“I have to help him with everything.” … “He doesn’t like school.” … “He doesn’t do well with a _____ teacher.” … “All you have to do is just call me.” … “He never acts this way at home.” … “I always believe my child.” … “There’s nothing else I can do.” … More items…•

What questions should I ask at parent teacher conference?

Let’s explore the types of questions you should ask at a parent-teacher conference….Questions About CommunicationWhat is the best way to contact you? … Can I tell you more about my student?Can I tell you more about what’s going on at home?How can I stay informed of school programs and my student’s success?More items…•

What do you say at the end of a parent teacher conference?

Most parents are willing to share any suggestions or feedback. This ends the parent-teacher conference on a positive note, because you took the time to address their concerns. This is a great way to let parents know that you are an open door, and willing to work with them for the success of their child.

How long does it take for a teacher to give a presentation?

Students share their work with their parents for the first half hour, and then teachers give a 30-minute presentation just for parents that builds on the work students are doing in school. Afterward, teachers provide related resources—games, websites, readings—that families can take home to use with their children.

Who suggested that parents think their kids are perfect?

To handle tricky situations when you have to give negative feedback at conferences, an approach suggested by Joe Hirsch, a leadership coach and former curriculum developer, might help.

What is 11th grade meeting?

In 11th grade, the student-led meetings are college and career focused. Students discuss their career interests and hopes for college, then create an action plan so they’re ready to apply. “School is not here to happen to students,” says Dan St. Louis, University Park’s principal. “They are an active participant.”.

Who is Maria Paredes?

While working as the director of community education in Creighton Elementary School District in Phoenix, Maria Paredes developed Academic Parent-Teacher Teams (APTT), a new take on parent-teacher conferences that is now used by schools all over the country.

Who is Terri Eichholz?

Terri Eichholz, an elementary teacher of over 25 years, also suggests being proactive and getting ahead of the feedback. “Don’t wait for problems to arise. Make it a point to communicate frequently and positively so that you have already developed a relationship before you hit bumps in the road,” she says.

Do parent teacher conferences have to be a headache?

Parent-teacher conferences don’t have to be such a headache. Educators weigh in on how to solve common problems.

What is a classroom website?

A classroom website, a school learning management system (LMS), or an online portfolio tool such as Pathbrite can all be used to create digital portfolios that are easy to access and update. 6. Make notes before, during, and after each conference.

Why are parents nervous at teacher conferences?

Parent-teacher conferences fill parents, teachers, and students with dread. Students get nervous at the thought of their parents and teachers discussing them. Parents get nervous about what the teacher may tell them about their children. Teachers get nervous about parents getting defensive. That nervousness makes for very stressful meetings.

Why are teachers nervous?

Teachers get nervous about parents getting defensive. That nervousness makes for very stressful meetings. The good news is that there are tactics teachers can employ to mitigate that stress and keep parent-teacher conferences simple and productive. Digital tools can support those endeavors.

Why do we need a student portfolio?

Using a student portfolio is the best way to give parents examples of their child’s work. But pulling together that many pieces of paper for each child in your class can be extremely time-consuming. That’s why digital portfolios are such great tools for teachers and parents.

Why is it important to keep up a steady flow of communication with parents?

It’s important to keep up a steady flow of communication with parents because successful collaboration on a child’s education requires regular updates about the child’s progress from both teachers and parents , the team at Kaplan Early Learning Company points out.

Where does Chad live?

He holds a master’s degree in communication and resides with his wife and cats in Oakland, California. You can reach Chad through his contact form.

Who is Shoshana Wolfe?

Shoshana Wolfe, a primary school teacher and author of Your Best Year Yet! A Guide to Purposeful Planning & Effective Classroom Organization, says parents need to leave the meeting with a clear understanding of what their child does well and what needs work.

What does it mean to see a graded essay?

You may not be able to prepare more than a couple of examples, but seeing one graded essay or project along with a homework assignment or quiz can really mean a lot to a parent. It also demonstrates how much you care about their child. It can enhance your effort to connect with each parent, getting them on board. 7.

What is the first impression you make when meeting someone in a classroom?

You and your classroom should be welcoming to students and parents, and your body language is one of the first impressions visitors have when meeting you. Crossed arms, tension, intense glares, rigid posture, frustrated and fidgety movements all convey negativity that will quickly sour the mood of a conference.

Why are anecdotes important?

Anecdotes are a great way to give parents insight into what’s happening in their child’s academic day. Visual examples of student work with feedback can really support your anecdotes. A flat gradebook full of scores doesn’t paint a picture of what it’s like to be a student in your class.

What are some good ways to present information?

A good way to present this information is through “Glows and Grows.”. Share a student’s positive achievements or traits that make them glow as well as two or more areas in which they can grow.

How to set up a parent teacher meeting?

Here are fifteen tips to set you up for success before diving into parent-teacher meetings. 1. Offer a flexible conference schedule. Some parents have more than one student in the school, multiple jobs, or may have difficulty traveling, so they need teachers to be flexible when scheduling conferences. In these cases, teachers may need to meet …

How to improve a gifted student?

Every student, even the gifted ones, can improve in some way. Write specific goals for each student. Along with those goals, create an action plan with steps for improvement, as well as a timeline with milestones to gauge a student’s progress.

How to teach a third grader?

2. Prepare, prepare, prepare. Whether you teach every subject to third-graders or geometry to 200 ninth- and tenth-graders, conferences require hours of preparation. Keeping accurate and current records makes this process much easier. 3. Arrange for a translator if needed, and find a way to connect.

1. Keep in mind, you might not be meeting with a parent

As a teacher, you work with a diverse group of students. Although they’re called “parent-teacher” conferences, not every student lives with a parent.

2. Create a welcoming environment

For some adults, parent-teacher conferences may be one of the only times during the year that they’ll be able to come up to the school. As a teacher, you should make them feel welcome and important. After all, you’re working together to make this an excellent school year for their child.

4. Your first interaction with a parent should be a positive one

During the first week of school, you usually get an idea of which students you’ll need to make parent contact with. Reach out to those parents before conferences and make an effort to connect on a positive note.

5. You and the parents are on the same team

At the beginning of the meeting, it’s important to establish that you and the parents are on the same team. As a teacher, you want what’s best for your students. And this is exactly what parents want, too.

6. Be specific

This tip is especially important for those kids that are doing awesome in your classroom. Their parents are used to hearing their child is doing well, so give specific examples. Some things that you can share with parents are:

7. Prepare like the teacher you are

When parents are meeting with you, they’re getting a glimpse of the world their child lives in every day. Just like you prepare for class, you want to prepare for parent-teacher conferences.

8. Set expectations

Inevitably you’ll encounter parents who want to talk until the cows come home. One way to avoid this is by letting parents know a time frame and general plan at the beginning of the conference.

What should parents discuss at parent teacher conferences?

While the main focus of parent-teacher conferences should be learning, it’s also important to discuss factors that can affect learning, such as students’ behavioral and social development. Other topics might include standardized test results, individualized education programs …

Why is it important to have a parent-teacher conference?

Conducting effective parent-teacher conferences can boost family involvement in your classroom and help promote positive outcomes for you, your students, and your school. A parent-teacher conference is a great opportunity to: share academic progress and growth based on classroom observations, testing data, assessments, portfolios, and assignments.

What to keep for teachers during conferences?

Some teachers keep worksheets with strengths, needs, and social or behavioral notes to guide them through conferences. If you’ll be discussing any problems, make sure to have documentation, such as examples of misbehavior or missed assignments. Also, make sure to inform parents about any problems before the conference.

What are the topics of the 504 conference?

Other topics might include standardized test results, individualized education programs (IEPs), 504 education plans, peer relationships, classroom behavior, motivation and work habits, as well as students’ strengths and challenges. School staff who support your students’ learning may attend the conference, too.

How often do parents and teachers meet?

Parent-teacher conferences are usually once or twice a year at progress reporting periods. They are brief meetings, lasting about 10-30 minutes. Conferences are typically scheduled 1 to 2 months in advance. Some middle and high schools only request parent conferences to discuss problems.

How to learn from parents?

learn from parents or guardians so you can be better informed about students’ strengths, needs, behaviors, and learning styles. discuss enrichment or intervention strategies to support students’ learning. discuss issues that may be interfering with students’ learning and growth.

Do middle schools have parent conferences?

Some middle and high schools only request parent conferences to discuss problems. Most schools set aside specific dates and times for conferences, but if school schedules conflict with family schedules, it’s worth the effort to find a mutually convenient time, or even schedule a phone or video conference.

Be prepared

Take time to create a list of any questions that have been on your mind lately.

Arrive on Time

Plan to get to the school early to give yourself time to park, walk in, be ready and waiting right on time. If you aren’t on time, the teacher is likely to start their next conference and will try to fit you in after, which may or may not be possible.

Keep it concise and on time

Stay focused on what the teacher is telling you and what questions are asking. Keeping questions and stories concise and on-point will help you accomplish everything on your to-do or to-ask list. Getting off track and jumping around leads to important tasks being forgotten and could lead to just running out of time.

Be a team player and work with the teacher

Parents and teachers working together is a critical part of your child’s education and growth. Remember, this is a collaborative effort. You are on the same team. That’s why you are there – to exchange information and insights.

Show appreciation

Our school’s teachers have just been hammered from all sides over the last few years, juggling gigantic tasks in an impossible situation with more and more piled on them every week. They are exhausted. And every day, they show up to teach and pour into our children, our future community members and leaders.

Follow up and stay in touch

The parent-teacher conference is only half of the equation; the other, perhaps even trickier, half consists of following up and achieving the goals established during the meeting.


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