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4 Tips for Communicating with parents

Communication is key for forming relationships. This holds true in the classroom as well. It is so important to set up good communication with your class from the very beginning. And by class, I mean students and their parents too! Good communication will help to build trust. Trust sets everyone up for a successful year together. Here are 3 tips for communicating with parents in the elementary classroom.

Use these 4 tips for communicating with parents to create a relationship of trust that lasts the entire year.

Start off your year with a bang

Sending a personalized letter to each student is a great way to start off the new school year.

Communication with your class should start right off the bat. One of my favorite things to do is send out letters to my new class as soon as class lists are released. The letter is so much fun for the kids to get in the mail. Even in this day and age of technology, there’s nothing like a personalized letter in the mailbox to make you feel special.

This letter welcomes the students to a new year and gets them excited about what’s to come. I like to introduce myself in the letter and tell them a little bit about my classroom. I also use the letter as an invitation to our open house night before school starts.

It never fails, at our Meet the Teacher Open House there are always many students and parents who thank me for the letter.

Make the most of open house

A Classroom Flip Book is a great way to provide parents with all the important information in an easy to use format they can access all year long

Open house night is a fun way to get to know your parents and provide them with all of the information they need for your classroom. You usually have a little bit of time to go over a lot of information. Since there is so much important information, I try to highlight the most important parts in my presentation but provide them with everything in writing too!

I have found it super helpful to have an interactive sheet for parents to look at as I go over my open house presentation. Enter the Back to School Flip Book! It contains all of the important information that I need to cover with them, and they can take it home to use as a reminder all year long.

The flip book is fully editable which makes it totally customizable to your needs. It’s super simple to make! You just type it up, print, fold, and staple. There are 5 tabs in the flip book which provide plenty of space for all the things! I like to include Contact Information, Meet the Teacher, Homework, Parent Information, and Our Daily Schedule. It is super cute and effective at the same time!

You can find this Back to School Flip Book in my store on Teachers Pay Teachers. It comes in 4 different themes so you can find one that goes well with your grade level, your class theme, or your personality.

School Themed Back to School Class Flip Book
This Emoji themed flip book is a great tool for communicating with parents
Pineapple Themed Back to School Flip Book for communicating with parents
This editable llama themed flip book is a great tool for parent communication

All the forms for back to school Night

Communication is a two way street. And while we have an important part to play, at the beginning of the year facilitating parent communication about their child is a key goal. When it comes to back to school, there are going to be lots of forms. There’s just so much information you need as you set out to care for these tiny humans for 8 hours a day. Make the process super organized and easy for parents and you’ll have the best luck getting all.the.forms turned in quickly. And . . . being organized sends a message to parents and you don’t even have to say anything. Not all parent communication is written or verbal!

Back to School Night is the first time you meet students and parents and an important time to start the communication process

I like to have these forms available on Back to School Night and the First Day of School. In the classroom, I create a few stations for the parents to move through. Each station is focused on one topic and is quick and easy to complete. I use this Back to School Night Packet to organize everything.

One of my favorite features is the Parent Passport which guides them through each station. This helps to keep the night organized and rolling so that I have time to communicate with students and parents.

Everything you need is included like a sign-in sheet, student information sheet, transportation form, volunteer form, and more. Plus, back to school night station signs and editable forms are included in the bundle! It really is everything you need to set up an organized way to get information at the beginning of the school year.

Communication for the rest of the year

Class Newsletters

Once you have laid the foundation of good communication at the beginning of the year, it’s time to make a plan to continue communicating with parents all year long. Classroom newsletters are a must for keeping up good communication throughout the year. I like to send them out weekly for parents to stay organized and in the know. I know some teachers that send them monthly. Do what works for you or is required by your administration.

Sending class newsletters can be easy with these editable newsletter templates.

Creating classroom newsletters doesn’t have to be hard or time consuming. With these Classroom Newsletter Templates, all the hard work is done for you. All you have to do is add your class information and send. Parents can stay in the know about what we are learning, important dates, and any class or school announcements. They always know what to expect. This way there are no surprises and everyone is happy!

Once the newsletter is done you can print it out, email it or post it on your class website. I actually like to do all 3! I’ve found that the easier I can make it for parents to find the information, the more likely they are to stay connected. Some parents like to have the paper to put on the refrigerator or keep with their calendars. Others like to keep the class website on Favorites and they know they can always find updated information.

last minute reminders

One of the best pieces of advice I have ever received about communicating with parents is this . . . remember that parents are busy. For some reason, this really stuck with me and now I always try to put myself in their shoes. I don’t know about you, but I know that I’ve forgotten things just because of my crazy busy schedule. Parents do too! I try to send last minute reminders to help them. This can be in the form of an email, posting on the class website, or a texting app like Remind. I try to send my reminders in a way that gets the message right to the parents without them needing to go look for it. You guessed it . . . I make sure it goes to their cell phone!

Since I started sending last minute reminders this way I have had more forms turned in early or on time, special events attended, money for pictures, and book fair at a higher rate, and I could keep going. Sure, it takes a few extra minutes but it is worth it. When these things are done there’s less stress on parents and me on the day of deadlines and special events.

I hope these tips for communicating with parents are helpful for you. It’s important to remember that we all have our own communication styles. Your methods will grow and change throughout the years. But one thing will stay the same….the importance of good communication!

Save these ideas for communicating with parents

Be sure to pin this to your favorite classroom Pinterest board so you can come back when you need more ideas for communicating with parents.

Use these 4 tips for communicating with parents to create a relationship of trust that lasts the entire year.

Danielle Murphy

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