In many ways, a school teacher is like a second parent to a student. Therefore, you must stay on the same page when it comes to your child’s school life and academic performance. Most schools regularly invite parents to connect and converse with teachers in one-on-one sessions, commonly known as parent-teacher interviews.
What Are Parent-Teacher Interviews?
Schools usually arrange brief meetings between teachers and parents at the beginning or end of an academic term or year. Parent-teacher interviews let you share and discuss your child’s academic, social, behavioural and emotional development. These interviews typically take 10 to 15 minutes, and they can help you and the teacher work out what is best for the student’s intellectual growth.
5 Questions to Ask at Parent-Teacher Interviews
Attending parent-teacher interviews may not be mandatory, but it shows a strong commitment and interest toward your child’s educational progress. However, the teacher might be a stranger, which can make a candid face-to-face discussion a bit stiff. But it helps to know what to expect and, more importantly, what to ask at a parent-teacher interview. Here are a few questions to ask your child’s teacher to get the conversation going.
1. How Is My Child Doing in School?
This is a rather general question, but it is still a good starting point. The teacher will probably answer by broadly describing your child’s performance and progress in schoolwork. Depending on the teacher’s area of practice, extracurricular activities, general behaviour and other achievements may also come up in the answer. The goal here is to get an idea of where your child stands and where they should be.
2. What Are My Child’s Interests, Strengths and Weaknesses?
Find out what your child shows a keen interest in and their strong suits and weaknesses. Discussing these traits will help you identify the areas that need improving and any noteworthy enthusiasm in particular fields. Kids normally excel in subjects and activities that draw their curiosity or exercise their abilities.
3. How Can I Help with My Child’s Classwork and Extracurriculars?
Teachers and parents should work hand in hand for the best interests of the student. The teacher might mention various ways you could help the child overcome their weaknesses. It is also equally important to promote, encourage and support the child’s strengths and constructive hobbies.
4. Does My Child Engage with Fellow Students?
Ask about how your kid gets along with other students. This will tell you whether they are comfortable and happy with the student community and the school in general. The social environment can easily determine a student’s overall academic performance and attitude toward learning.
5. How Can the School Improve My Child’s Development?
The school might have support frameworks for students with special needs. Ask about lessons, tutoring or coaching that could nurture and develop your child’s unique talents or strengthen their weaknesses. For instance, there could be helpful boot camps or other programmes for students that require extra attention.
A parent-teacher interview is a great way to gain valuable insights into your child’s academic and social life. Ask as many questions as you need to and ensure you get clear answers, particularly on effective ways to better your kid’s learning experience. And remember, you can always follow up with the teacher after the interview to compare notes and report on progress.