Thoughts about American Education Week
Although parents of older students are less likely to come to school than those of younger ones, it never hurts to anticipate and prepare for visitors. Here are some things to think about as you make your plans for next week.
- Discuss with your students what they should do if their parents visit (get chairs, sit next to them, sit in the back, show them a sign-in sheet, etc.). You should have a couple of extra chairs in your room so parents don’t have to squeeze into student desks. If you need some, contact a building manager.
- Discuss your schedule with students and tell them the best days for their parents to visit. Choose days where parents will see a variety of activities, including instruction.
- Try to greet parents at some point during their visit to thank them for coming and to help them feel at ease. If you see parents frown or look skeptical, don’t take it personally. They may be concentrating, thinking about errands, or tired. If you greet them, it will help them and you relax.
- Design lessons that provide a variety of activities, but don’t feel as if you have to entertain.
- If a student does misbehave, don’t be afraid to address the situation immediately. This is the time to be consistent and show parents that you have the class under control.
- You may wish to display student work for parents to view as they enter the room. Also consider doing a little cleaning to eliminate clutter, trash in desks, ripped bulletin board stuff, graffiti, unused materials, and other distracters.
- You may want to send a thank you note or postcard home for those parents who took the time to visit; the school will pay for postage.