Teachers at every grade level understand that teacher-family communication plays a vital role in student success. It not only increases the likelihood of a student completing their homework, but also tends to improve a student’s active class participation, in addition to positively contributing to the behavior and social skills of students. Despite these benefits, teachers will often have a hard time effectively communicating with the parents of their students, leaving much to be desired as far as a productive teacher-parent relationship goes.

Effective communication strategies are key for teachers, but, sometimes the most effective communication strategy is listening. Therefore, a strategy teachers can follow when engaging with parents is active listening. Parents often provide valuable insights into the student’s home situation, behaviors, and academic strengths through casual conversations. This information can guide a teacher’s feedback and help them better understand their student’s needs, ultimately contributing to improved classroom management.

Beyond just actively listening, teachers must utilize mindful communication strategies when connecting with parents. Teachers will find the most success in building relationships with parents when using clear, jargon-free language and maintaining a professional demeanor. This extends to communication of the text and email variety as well, as timely and professional responses can ensure parents understand the commitment teachers are making to maintaining open communication and building strong relationships.

By actively engaging with parents, teachers are able to unlock a treasure trove of insights into their students’ lives, which can then guide their teaching approach, enhance classroom management, and contribute to a supportive learning environment. For more information on the importance of the parent-teacher connection, read on to the infographic accompanying this post.

First-Time Teacher’s Guide For Talking To Parents this infographic was contributed by Silke Lessner, an organization providing on-demand videos centered around online teacher training