01 Aug Back to School: Smart Questions to Ask Your Child’s New Teacher
By enrolling your child in private school, you’ve already taken steps to ensure that they have a meaningful education early on. Maintain an active role in their education by building a relationship with your child’s teacher.
At the start of the school year, parents have the opportunity to meet the teacher. This is an important experience for both the teacher and the parent. It allows you to have an open discussion about what the upcoming school year will entail. If you’re meeting your child’s teacher for the first time, there are a few questions you should ask to ensure that both you and your child know what to expect for the upcoming school year.
What will my child learn this year?
All schools are different. Each year brings something new for your child to learn. When meeting your child’s teacher, you should ask about the big concepts that your child will be learning that year. That way, you can prepare ahead of time. If the teacher says there will be a focus on math and you know your child struggles, then you can have them practice ahead of time. If you know there will be an emphasis on independent reading during the school year, you can have your child practice reading.
How do you manage classroom behavior?
Your child should always know what’s expected of them in the classroom. That’s why it is important that you ask the teacher how they manage classroom behavior. If a child is misbehaving, what is their policy? Do they have students go in a timeout, write an essay on what was done wrong, or apologize? You should also ask the teacher how they handle positive behavior. Are there sticker charts, positive affirmations, or treats? By knowing these things, you can let your child know what happens if they misbehave or do something good.
How do you use technology in the classroom?
More schools are making the push towards using technology in the classroom. This means an increased presence of videos, tablets, and computers in the classroom. Some schools even assign a tablet to students to help teach them how to do math and read. Many schools feel like these tools are beneficial because they hold a student’s attention. If you are someone who isn’t comfortable with technology, you should ask the teacher how frequently students will be working on these devices.
How are creativity and innovative thinking promoted in your classroom?
Creativity is important, especially for little learners. That’s why it’s important to know how students will use their innovative thinking in the classroom. Will they have art classes? Music classes? If your child is getting a private school education, you should ask if students are prompted to think outside-of-the-box or if everything is by the book.
How much homework can my child expect?
Knowing just how much homework is expected of your child is crucial for maintaining the proper balance between school and home-life. If you are given this information ahead of time, you can make educated guesses on how much time your child will have for after school activities, friends, and hobbies. This makes it easier for you to develop a schedule with an allotted time for homework. It also helps parents figure out routines such as when to eat dinner and when bedtime should be.
What is your approach if a child is struggling socially?
Developing social skills is just as important as learning. If you think your child will struggle socially, it’s important to give the teacher a heads up so they can keep an eye on them. You should ask your teacher how they help include students who struggle socially. This will help you know your kid is being included in activities.
What can I do at home to support my child’s education?
When it comes to a private school education, you’ll want your child to learn as much as they can inside and outside the classroom. That’s why it’s important to ask the teacher what you personally can do at home to further your kid’s education. Are there workbooks they can use to practice certain skills they may be behind on? Is there a book the teacher would recommend?
What is the best way to communicate with you?
Finally, you’ll want to have an open line of communication between your family and the teacher. That’s why you need to ask what the best way to get in contact with them is. Some teachers prefer face-to-face visits while others are fine with emails, texts, or even calls. Creating a channel for communication is important so that you can receive daily updates on when your child does something good or if they are struggling with something in the classroom.
Asking Questions Helps Everyone
It’s important to know your child is in good hands during the school year. You want them to learn, to make friends, to have fun, and to develop new skills. It can be frightening to leave them while they’re at school, but preparation is key for everyone. Having a dialogue with your child’s teacher ahead of time is important so that everyone knows what to expect during the school year.
With a challenging curriculum, dedicated teachers, and child-centered classrooms, Carden Conejo School provides students with a rewarding educational experience. Learn more about our primary school programs and elementary school curriculum today.