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The Voice of the Black Community

Life and Religion

Building a relationship with your child's teacher matters
It's important for the most influential people in a child's life to team up
 
Published Wednesday, August 14, 2013
by StatePoint

clientuploads/v38n13photos/Teacher and Kids_300.jpgChildren are mom and dad’s top priority, and parents want to give them every advantage in the world to succeed. But with all the time kids spend at school, parents cannot do it alone.

That’s why it’s important for parents and teachers, often the most influential adults in a child’s life, to team up on a common goal.

Parents should cultivate relationships with their child’s teacher early, so they can work together toward the child’s success. Here are a few ways to get started:

Introduce Yourself

Don’t wait until there is a problem before meeting the teacher. Introduce yourself as soon as possible -- ideally before the stresses of the school year are in full swing. It doesn’t have to be a long conversation -- just one to let the teacher know who you are and that you are interested in your child’s education.

Show Appreciation

All kids and their parents have a teacher they admire and want to thank. Taking a few minutes to share these sentiments is important and can be easy. Parents can show gratitude with simple thank-you cards or by writing a personal message or sharing a short note of thanks on stationary. A few kind words can go a long way.

Spend Time

In today’s economy, many schools are stretched thin for resources. School systems are increasing class sizes and slashing budgets. Parents who have time can offer to help out. Whether it is chaperoning school trips, preparing items for a fundraiser or just donating old books to the classroom, this kindness will go a long way toward solidifying the parent-teacher relationship.

Help with Supplies

Teachers spend on average $398 of their own money on supplies and resources, and 92 percent of teachers use their own money to provide supplies for their students, according to the National School Supply and Equipment Association. Find out what the needs of the classroom are and donate extra supplies if you are able. Another way to show some support is to see if your school is enrolled in the General Mills program called Box Tops for Education. If so, earn cash for your child’s school by clipping Box Tops coupons from participating products.

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