Before the Conference

1. Make an appointment.

2. Ask your child:

  • What do you like best about school?
  • Is there anything you’re having trouble with at school?

3. Make a list.

  • Think of just a few important things to ask or share with the teacher.

During the Conference

1. Listen carefully.

  • This is your chance to find out how your child is doing.
  • Try to understand the teacher’s point of view.

2. Ask questions.

Here are some sample questions: How is my child doing in class?

  • How is my child doing in reading?
  • How is my child doing in math?
  • What are his best subjects?
  • Are there areas where he needs extra help?

What should I know about homework?

  • How much time should my child spend on homework?
  • When should homework get turned in?
  • What can I do at home to help?

What if my child is behind?

  • How can you help my child in areas that are hard for her?
  • Are there programs at school that can help?
  • What activities can I do at home to help?

What if my child is ahead?

  • Is my child getting enough challenging work?
  • Does the school have a program for gifted students?
  • How can I get my child tested for it?

How is my child doing in general?

  • Does my child get along with the other children?
  • Does my child participate in class activities?
  • How is my child behaving?

How can we stay in touch?

  • When is a good time to talk with you if I have questions?
  • How can I keep track of how my child is doing?

3. Share.

  • Help the teacher get to know your child better.
  • If the teacher is having trouble, share ideas that have worked in the past.

After the Conference

  • Talk to your child.
  • Try the home activities the teacher suggested.
  • Follow up with the teacher to make sure your child is getting support.
  • Make sure the teacher knows how to reach you.
  • Ask for updates.