What Did She Say? 3 Strategies For Increasing Understanding During Your Child's Preschool Conference
Parent-teacher conferences are one method that your child's teacher uses to highlight their progress while discussing strategies for overcoming challenges. Yet, so much is covered in these meetings that parents often find themselves trying to understand exactly what was said about their child's development. As you prepare for your upcoming conference, use these strategies to get the most out of meeting with your child's teacher.
Ask For Clarification
Early childhood educators undergo a high level of training and education that enables them to plan activities that meet each child's individual needs in a diverse preschool setting. While this benefits every child, they sometimes forget that parents may not understand some of their teacher terms. For example, your child's teacher may say that they are using scaffolding as a technique to increase your child's oral language skills. While you may be thinking of a construction structure, the teacher simply means that they are building their skills by asking your child broader questions to encourage them to expand their speech. If your child's teacher uses a term that you don't understand, simply ask them to clarify. They'll love giving you more insight into how they plan their activities.
Talk to Your Child
Preschoolers are often highly aware of everything that goes on in their classrooms, so asking your child a few questions can shed insight into their day. Talk to your child about things they enjoy about going to school along with things that they find hard. Knowing that your child enjoys spending time with a certain friend or prefers to help turn the pages at storytime gives you a starting point for putting together a bigger picture using the feedback you also receive from their teacher.
Put It In Writing
Talking about your child is like talking about your heart. Most of the time, parent-teacher conferences are positive. However, difficult topics may also be brought up during these meetings such as a child who is struggling with adjusting to morning drop-off or concerns about a developmental delay. Fortunately, preschools are a tremendous resource for finding solutions to common early childhood problems. As your child's teacher shares their suggestions, write them down or ask for a copy of their assessments. This way, you can refer to them later as you contemplate how to give your child the right type of support.
For new preschool parents, those first conferences can be a little nerve-wracking. Yet, your child's teacher understands and is always available to go over things that you may have questions about later. Remember that a parent-teacher conference is only one method of communication. Talking throughout the year or scheduling a follow-up conference to address additional concerns will ensure that you keep communication flowing. For more information, contact local professionals like Sammamish Montessori School.