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Parents Meetings


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Hi All,

 

I have been trying to think of a way of meeting with Parents individually at the beginning of the year.

 

I am a reception class teacher in a primary school without a Nursery. I have found over the past couple of years that a 5 minute appointment in October is not long enough. This is how the rest of school work it.

 

The parents have so many questions and want to know how their child has settled into their new school. It would also be nice to talk to them about their child's progress and learning journey.

 

I hold a general meeting for parents to remind them of routines and what they can expect from the year - topics, homework, how their child learns in FS2 etc after the children have been settled a couple of weeks.

 

Any ideas or if anyone does this already would be brilliant to hear.

 

Thank you

Edited by Guest
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This is probably a bit too late for this year but do you do home visits before the children start? In all the schools where I've worked that's when they answer all the questions etc. that you're talking about and it gives you a good picture of what the child is really like because they're in their own home so they's comfortable, rather than being all shy and hiding behind mum's leg like some children are when they visit school for the first time!

They're usually carried out in the first week or two, gradually bringing more children in as the visits have taken place, or in the last couple of weeks of the summer term before the summer holidays ready for sept. Both really busy times of year but I thinks it's worth giving up the time because they always seem to be successful and beneficial.

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I don't meet with the parents in the following way at my school (yet!), but I did do this in my previous school.

 

Each week, we focussed on 3 children, so we would do long observations, parents would fill out a home booklet, collated all evidence in their learning journal and made a plan for their learning based on all observations. The parents of these 3 children would be invited to share their child's learning journal and individual learning plan with us in a meeting after or before school, usually on the Monday or Tuesday after the child's focus week. We would then get to meet every parent once per term.

 

This did entail having meetings with parents every week, but we didn't have parent evenings with the rest of the school (no late evenings) and we got to spend more time with each parent. The meetings would usually take 15 minutes.

 

I am hoping to get back to this way of working as I find I overrrun and am one of the last teachers left at parent evenings because there is so much to talk about.

Edited by millhill
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I teach Reception and have individual parent meetings during the second week. The children go home at 1pm after lunch and I use the rest of the afternoon to meet with parents. I use this opportunity for parents to ask questions, share information, talk about how their child has settled, and for them to contribute to assessments (I record this in learning journey.) I also give out a sheet for parents to fill in giving child's current interests, preferred learning style etc. to help us with planning during the first few weeks. We hold a whole class info meeting after a few weeks and individual progress meetings later in the term, but the parents really appreciate the chance to meet at an early stage. It's also good to get to know the parents' faces away from the organised chaos of drop off and pick up time!

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Home visits have always been done at my school but always in June/July. I brought them forward to September and so did my home visits Monday-Wednesday last week and then the children started on Thursday, each visit lasted 20 minutes and was really useful to get to know the parents and children in their own home and answer any questions they had about how we do things. Having the home visits so close to starting was so beneficial we did not have a single tear from 30 children and noone had to be peeled off mum (a first for us!) Next week our whole school does a parents drop in so that parents can meet the teacher and teachers each talk through things like homework expectations and answer any questions. I also invite parents in and do mini talks about EYFS, phonics, story telling and maths so that when it comes to parents evening towards the end of October, we are simply talking about how they've settled, where they are at and what their next steps are rather than explaining EYFS or phonics. At our school appointments are all 10 mins long.

At my daughter's school in week 4 the children all come for the morning and lunch and then go home and in the afternoons parents have an appointment to come in and talk to the teacher about how they have settled and then their parents evening is later than the rest of the school in Nov to talk about progress.

Deb

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just being nosey (nothing to do with me!) but what do you do when both parents are working?

 

home visit wise we saw all 30 children in their home during the day and I would estimate that 60% of our mums work at least part time. Parents were told their slot for home visits back in june and we could be a bit flexible to work around them. I think if enough notice is given there are not many people who can't organise their job around it or take off an hour from work. (we have a child whose parents are both full time GPs and they both managed to be there for her home visit!) I work full time and have 3 children the youngest just starting school and I have always been allowed out for this sort of thing. Parents evening wise we have an early parents evening and a late one for those that work and for the parents meetings re phonics etc we usually do them at 5-6 so working parents can make it.

Deb

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just being nosey (nothing to do with me!) but what do you do when both parents are working?

 

home visit wise we saw all 30 children in their home during the day and I would estimate that 60% of our mums work at least part time. Parents were told their slot for home visits back in june and we could be a bit flexible to work around them. I think if enough notice is given there are not many people who can't organise their job around it or take off an hour from work. (we have a child whose parents are both full time GPs and they both managed to be there for her home visit!) I work full time and have 3 children the youngest just starting school and I have always been allowed out for this sort of thing. Parents evening wise we have an early parents evening and a late one for those that work and for the parents meetings re phonics etc we usually do them at 5-6 so working parents can make it.

Deb

thanks deb i wasnt being inflamatory its just that as a parent of two children i have had a problem with this over the years and am always looking for solutions. (my husband works long hours and has an 1 1/2 commute each way...he has never been to any parents meetings as they were always before 7 and so was never able to make it back in time. As a pre-school i cannot afford to support home visits. (sorry for the hyjack keljo :o )

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thanks deb i wasnt being inflamatory

 

don't worry! I didn't see it like that, both me and my husband work full time and it is a nightmare of a juggle sometimes (my daughter is part time at school until after half term for example!) our late parents evenings are 5.30-8pm at school to take into account working parents.

Deb

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