We are already 6 weeks into the school year and today was our first parent-teacher conference day. It was great to have a day to think about how much my students have learned and how I can be better in the next six weeks. I had no conferences the first hour, so I started lesson planning. Then it hit me, I can’t wait for parents to come to me, I need to get a hold of them!
Parents need to hear some good news – so I got on the phone.
I called a bunch of parents. I bragged on some great kids and thanked the parents for teaching their kid to be respectful and hardworking. I called others and told them,
“Your child is too smart for a C. I think ___________ should be a A student! What can I do to help?”
“Hi Mrs. ______________. This is Ms. Johnston, your son’s (crazy) Spanish teacher. Do you have a minute to talk?
He has been really successful and is a fast learner. However, when he missed that week of school, he got a little behind. I’d love to see him get caught up so his grade matches how talented he really is.”
“Hi Mrs. _______. I ran into your son at the soccer game Friday and he told me he has a .5 GPA. I want to help. I know he can do better in my class. Can he stay after school one day this week? How can I help motivate him?”
I kept the call short and always positive. Even kids that are a little lazy have good qualities. Usually they are really smart. Parents want to hear to good news and know they have some support at school. Making these calls made my day. I think it will be even more beneficial when the students find out I called with good news!
If you have conferences coming up or you can take a few minutes once a week after school to send some good news home, it will go a long way for the student and your class.
Here’s an awesome blog post about the power of calling home and how to get parents’ on your team… Thanks Elena!
Next, kids need to hear some good news!
Teachers are pushing, parents are motivating, and kids can start to wear out! They need some encouragement. We just finished a unit assessment last week so I took some time to tell them 1 positive note about how they used Spanish as well as 1 thing to work on. Here are a few…
Kara and I always talk about how important it is to celebrate the accomplishments our students make!Try it. Give them a little good news, it will go a long way!
Thank you for the reminder, you are right! The rubric shown in the picture, can it be purchased somewhere? Thanks again, off to leave some positiveness!
Thanks to Thomas Sauer –
Here’s the performance based assessment rubric…
Let me know if the link doesn’t work.
Thank you so much, Megan!
Good advice! Wish I would have done more of that in years past. Keep passing it on! You are affecting lives!
How do you assign a number grade to your rubrics? Does each box have a number value?
This is how we do it in our district… check out the “grading guidelines” chart…
Hope this helps!
I would like the grading guidelines also. The link above says that the page cannot be found. Is it by password only?
Here’s the updated page –>