Parent/Teacher Interview Tips: Four Questions You Need To Ask Your Child’s Teacher
October – almost time for this year’s first parent/teacher interview. Many parents are not quite sure how to handle these interviews. They do not know how to get information that they want from the teacher. They are sometimes too uncomfortable to ask pointed questions that the teacher may not be able to answer. They are also sometimes afraid that if they are seen as “pushy”, the teacher will somehow take it out on their child. As a result, many parents, especially the ones that most teachers would like to see, simply skip the opportunity to meet with their child’s teacher. Mostly, it’s the parents whose children are doing well that take the time, make the effort and the commitment to show up for the parent/teacher interviews.
In almost all cases, the interview consists of talking in general terms about the student and their progress. The discussion then often leads to a description of what will be happening in the classroom in the coming weeks and months.
Most often the parents leave the session with a general sense that everything is relatively okay or that there might be a problem, but that it is being attended to. They do not generally leave with a clear sense of exactly what their child is accomplishing, has accomplished or is struggling with. There are lots of descriptions, explanations and opinions, but little if any real data.
Parents can get more precise answers if they learn to ask more specific questions. They can accomplish this by asking the four specifically worded questions about critical areas of curricula that follow:
Question #1 – “What does my child know now?”
Question #2 – “What will you teach him/her next in (pick a curriculum)?”
Question #3 – “How will you know that s/he knows it?”
Question #4 – “How will I know that she knows it?”
Each of these questions deserve to be explained in greater detail. I will do so in the following 4 blogs. Stay tuned so that you can get a better idea of what your child actually knows.