March 05, 2021
As educators, you know a lot of work goes into leading parent-teacher conferences. Hours of preparation go into discussing important, and often sensitive, information with families in a limited timeframe. Plus, talking to parents can feel stressful and nerve-wracking. How do you kindly provide feedback while also making the experience positive for everyone?
Fortunately, we posed that question to our educators on DreamBox Nation, and they rose to the occasion with helpful tips for mastering parent-teacher conferences.
The key to a smooth and productive conference is balancing positive reinforcement with critical feedback. That said, it’s easy to overwhelm parents with too much information. Here are three ways DreamBox Nation members frame their conversations with learning guardians:
When it’s time to talk about a student’s performance, don’t just tell parents – show them. Have examples of their child’s work prepared and ready to show any time you confer with a parent or learning guardian. DreamBox Nation advocates also advise you to:
Don’t be afraid to try new things with families! Traditionally, the parent-teacher conference excludes students, but maybe this time you ask parents to have the student join. Here are three tactics DreamBox Nation members recommend for teachers who want to try a new, more inclusive approach:
Conferences can be nerve-wracking for everyone – you, the parents and the student. It’s normal! Just remember that we conduct conferences to support the students. Everyone at that table or on that video call has the student’s best interest at heart.
Come prepared, take a few deep breaths, and get your students involved so everyone stays connected.
This post was originally published on February 7, 2019 and updated on March 5, 2021.