Creative Ways to Communicate with Parents

28 July 2016
Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!
It seems like some years are easier to maintain communication with parents than others.  If you are looking for some new, creative ways to communicate with your student's parents this year, look no further!



Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!
     First, if you are not already using Class Dojo, what are you waiting for!?  Class Dojo has been hands down the best tool I have found for communicating with parents and my students LOVE it!  Students begin by creating an account and personalizing their own avatar.  Last year, it always amazed me that my one student who never completed a homework assignment, found time almost every night to change his avatar!  Parents also create an account, which links to their child's account.  To make sure all parents sign up, I have computers ready on open house night and help all parents create their account.  I also help parents download the app at the same time so that they have easy access to Class Dojo at anytime, anywhere.
     The teacher is responsible for creating their class in Class Dojo and creating both positive and negative categories that the students can earn points from.  Positive categories may include things like 'Encourages a Classmate' or 'Remaining On Task.'  Negative categories may include things like 'Calling Out' or 'Did Not Turn in Homework.'  The teacher also decides how many points each of those categories are worth.  Students will gain points for positive actions and lose points for negative actions.
Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!
     The neat part about this is program is that I am able to keep a scoreboard on SMART Board throughout the day and am able to add or take away points from anywhere using an app on my phone or iPad.  Students are able to monitor their progress using the scoreboard and parents can track how their students are doing throughout the day on their phone, iPad, or computer.  I found that using Class Dojo kept my student's parents more aware of both the good and the bad things their students were up to during the day and, since they were more aware of what was happening during their child's day, they came to me more often with questions.
Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!
     Class Dojo also has a tool so that you can send out direct messages to parents.  I usually send a direct message to all parents at the start of the week, letting them know about homework assignments and tests that are coming up.  Since Class Dojo provides parents easy access to me through an app, I have found that they are more likely to direct message me through the program rather than using email.  The best part about Class Dojo is it is a FREE program!
Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!
     Another creative way I have found to communicate with parents are parent study guides, especially for harder topics and subjects such as math.  Parents used to constantly tell me they were unable to help their child with math because they were not confident in content or "the way they used to teach it is different from how they teach it now."  So, I started sending home parent study guides at the beginning of every unit, with step-by-step instructions and strategies I was teaching students in the classroom.  Since sending home math parent study guides, I have seen an increase in parents helping their children with homework and frequently hear from parents what a help the study guides are.  I have 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade math parent study guides available in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  Click on each of the images to learn more about math parent study guides.
Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!Creative Ways to Communicate with Parents
Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!
     Finally, I think it's great to send home class newsletters but they can be time consuming.  Recently, I stumbled upon an idea from one of my favorite teacher authors, Miss 5th, that solves that problem; student created newsletters.  Miss 5th created an editable template and selects 2 different students to create the classroom newsletter each week.  Then, she selects a few other students to edit the newsletter.  Students regularly rotate jobs so that everyone has an opportunity to write for the newsletter each month.  I love this idea because parents are always more inclined to do something when their child is involved, so having them write the classroom newsletter ensures that parents will read it.

I hope these ideas leave you inspired as you begin thinking about ways to engage your student's parents this school year!  Have a great day!
https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Vestals-21st-Century-Classroom
 
Looking for some ways to improve communication with parents this year!? Here's a few creative ways to communicate with student's parents and get them more involved in the classroom!

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