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Going to School

The Parent-Teacher Partnership

The experts have been polled and the results are in: a positive parent-teacher relationship contributes to your child’s school success.

“Easier said than done,” you may be thinking. After all, there are teachers your child will love and teachers your child may not. There are teachers you’ll like and dislike as well. There are teachers who may adore your child, and those who just don’t understand him. But whatever the case, your child’s teacher is the second most important person in your child’s life (after her parents, of course). And you can help make their relationship a strong and rewarding one.

“A positive parent-teacher relationship helps your child feel good about school and be successful in school,” advises Diane Levin, Ph.D., professor of education at Wheelock College. “It demonstrates to your child that he can trust his teacher, because you do. This positive relationship makes a child feel like the important people in his life are working together.”

Communicating well is a key factor for making this relationship work. “Communication on both sides is extremely important,” notes teacher Susan Becker, M. Ed. “The parents need information about what and how their child is learning, and the teacher needs important feedback from the parent about the child’s academic and social development.”

But communicating effectively with a busy teacher, who may have up to 30 kids in a class, can be challenging. When’s the right time to talk — and when isn’t? How can you get her attention? What should you bring up with her with and what should be left alone? How do you create a relationship with someone you may only see a few times a year? And how do you do this without coming across like an overanxious pain in the you-know-what?

Try these strategies to build a positive relationship with your child’s teacher.

Approach this relationship with respect. Treat the teacher-parent-child relationship the way you would any really important one in your life. Create a problem-solving partnership, instead of confronting a teacher immediately with what’s wrong. “Meet with a teacher to brainstorm and collaborate ways to help your child, instead of delivering a lecture,” recommends Susan Becker, M. Ed.

Let your child develop his own relationship with the teacher. “This is one of the first relationships with an adult your child may have outside the family unit. If you take a back seat and let the relationship develop without much interference, a special bond may develop,” advises guidance counselor Linda Lendman. “For young children, the teacher-child relationship is a love relationship,” adds Michael Thompson, Ph.D. “In fact, it may be their first love relationship after their parents and it can be pretty powerful and wonderful.”

Try not to brag. Of course you think your child is brilliant, but bragging over her many accomplishments may send a message to the teacher that you think he may not be good enough to teach your child. “You don’t need to sell your child to the teacher,” notes Michael Thompson Ph.D., “you have to trust that your teacher will come to know what’s important herself. Telling a teacher that your child loves to read will thrill the teacher. But challenging your teacher with statements like ‘Susie read 70 books over the summer’ or ‘Matthew is a whiz at math,’ may backfire.”

Remember how you liked (or disliked) your teachers. Your experience at school is likely to affect your attitude toward your child’s teacher. “It’s important to leave your own baggage at the door, so you can talk about your child with the teacher (and not about you!)” adds Michael Thompson, Ph.D.

  • Princi

    I also agree that Parent-Teacher interaction is must because this is the only way through we can explore the child’s strength and weak areas. A smooth flow of information between parent and teacher will definitely help the child be victorious in school.

  • pkz23

    how in the world is telling your kid’s teacher that they read 70 books “challenging” them?

  • swati jotangiya

    which problems can occure if parent not attain any school meeting

  • Kate

    “Communicating well is a key factor for making this relationship work. “Communication on both sides is extremely important,”

    I agree!!

  • Mollie

    Is there an author and date for this article so that I can reference it in my college essay? :)

  • Harper Barbara

    My daughter lives far apart from me in a different juristriction, though when she comes to see me. I am still involved with her academics and learning skills. Can you tell me what advice should I give a teenage girl about her academics and social life? Sincerely- Parent and Teacher- Ms. Barbara Age 38.

  • camronn

    They experiment with IT certification 98-363 exams the properties of matter at the sand and water tables. They learn phonics when they sing songs together. They MB7-701 real brain dumps master important physics concepts like balance and stability as they build blocks at the block center. 70-687 braindumps demo

  • Dawn

    Good parent-teacher communication is worth its weight in gold! Here’s something else I just read on the same subject.

    Take care!

    -Dawn, Teacher and Parent

  • jasmine

    How do I reference this?

  • Ebere Maduka

    Is there a date and time for this article?

  • Sydney

    According to, this article was published on November 7, 2012, if this helps anyone.

    • Carleesa Duncan

      Thank you. I was looking for material to do an essay for my education class and was looking for the citation

  • Alice Marcs

    The invisible bond of maturity and immaturity.

    The bond between the teacher and parent is the invisible bond of maturity and immaturity, which affects the child’s growth and development. The parent- child bond is a secure bond of comfort and happiness; whereas, the bond of the teacher- child is the first bond which the child faces at a very young stage in the outside world without the interference of parents. This bond helps him to climb the social ladder at every stage and plays a crucial role in his mental and emotional development. But, at every stage this may not be easy for the child as well as for the parents’: the child may dislike the teacher or vice- versa.

    At this stage, the invisible bond between the two-mature people in the society and one immature person comes into force. This bond decides the future of child because this bond will have the prolonged impact on the child’s mental development. Thus, parent- teacher relationship should be of mutual trust and not of distrust and careless decisions.

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