Your child needs her teacher's support for the school year to go well. To ensure a committed ally in the classroom, be in touch early and often.
Explain how ADHD affects behavior and learning, and describe classroom strategies that have helped your child in the past. Strike a respectful tone, and express your interest in working together.
Use this time to share information and to learn the classroom routine. How are transitions handled? Are there opportunities to move around? Inquire about classroom rules and consequences. This is also the time to assess the teacher's knowledge of the disorder. Ask how she's worked with ADDers in the past, and offer information.
State your child's goals for the year — better grades, for example — and talk about her interests. Suggest specific measures that might help your child in terms of motivation, discipline, and structure.
Keep the teacher informed about educational assessments or family situations. Whatever the format — daily e-mails, weekly phone calls, or informal chats — show that
you value his time by keeping your communications brief.
When discussing problems with the teacher, focus on solutions and steer clear of blame.
Volunteer to tutor students who need reading help or to run a class project, to free up the teacher's time a bit.
Keep all school professionals, tutors, sports coaches, and others who work with your child up-to-date on his progress. If problems arise, solicit their ideas.
This article was written for parents of children with ADHD, but the tips on parent-teacher communication can be easily adapted to fit any child or any learning difficulty.
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