At the end of every day, I like to hear what my children have been up to at school — what have they learned, what they have enjoyed, and what events might be coming up. But instead I get in response: "Oh I can’t remember, I’m tired, or I’ll tell you later." After speaking to other parents it appears this is a common response heard by parents who want to engage or find out about their child’s day.

Parents and teachers are often busy and distracted too. Parents are busy with the drop-off-at-school routine, rushing to work, or organizing other children; teachers are preparing classes and setting up. So, when do we all get a chance to communicate?

We can all agree that parental involvement in education can lead to better-performing children. When I know what my children are learning each week, I can bring that learning home to encourage and extend their interest, and — let’s be honest — the experience can educate me as well. How many of us have forgotten the rhyme to remember the order of the planets? Or the number of days in each month? I enjoy having my children teach me these forgotten gems and it empowers them to know they are the holder of this knowledge.

With parents, students, and teachers communicating with each other on a regular basis, it makes for a more enjoyable educational experience for all. As parents, we have to juggle the school’s, our child’s, and our own desired outcomes for our child’s education. This means that keeping all avenues of communication open is important. We all prefer different methods of contact, but it’s managing the school’s processes that can be a challenge at times.

How often and by what means does your school communicate with you about your children’s progress? Do you get the opportunity to schedule one-on-one meetings? Do you receive regular email notifications? Or is it notes home in your child’s school bag?

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