As we look forward to the Back to School season there is a high probability that some of you will teach online, some in person, and some in a more hybrid model. Some of you will even use a different model based on the time of year and circumstances where you live. School-Home communication has never been more important!
I wrote earlier this year about considerations for keeping those relationships strong through the quarantine and distance learning transitions and a couple years ago I even wrote covering many of these concepts (here). Many of those tips are still super applicable when you think about how to communicate with parents. In fact, these tips actually align pretty closely with them.
I wanted to write more because I keep thinking about how in times of uncertainty we can focus on all the things that fall in the overlapping parts of the venn diagram. This is how we can start. One thing that won’t change much is how important communicating with parents and families will be.
Here are some things to consider, no matter how or where you teach:
- Send a summer letter– Introductions are super important and so much about sending this letter is the same whether you’re in person or online. (read here for more about tips about writing a summer letter)
2. Plan to communicate– Choose a primary communication method/ app that you can share with parents and collect contact information early.
3. Invite communication before the first day of school- Be creative with scheduled visits, videos etc. depending on your schools policy.
4. Follow up the first week with a phone or video call. (This post has more about this and the checklist I use)
5. Share clear classroom expectations
6. Plan an in person or virtual back to school night event. Personally invite families.
7. Stay in touch!