I was asked,” How important is parent and teacher communication?” My answer will surprise you.
“Not as important as student to teacher and child to parent communication. I believe we need to teach children the Art of Self-Advocacy“
When students learn how to be self-advocates, communication between parent and teacher is less important.
Reasons for helping children learn how to speak on their own behalves to teachers, professors, and bosses:
- If the children are communicating when they are confused or need clarification, their teachers will be able to better meet their needs.
- The parents can stop advocating for the children. When parents speak to the teacher, it can often lead to confrontational situations.
- The children gain confidence when they learn the power they hold for improving the instruction provided by the teacher.
- When they ask for visual support during instruction, the teacher learns that it is the best way to reach the students. When students recognize that they can’t take notes during instruction because they are auditory learners and trying to take notes draws the attention away from what they hear and directs it to what they see, they can ask for copies of the notes to recopy after class. This allows them to gain more from the lecture. My ebook, Insiders’ Information About Teachers Every Student Should Know- Key to School Success, offers students ideas about what to tell their teachers and how to say it.
- They learn the empowering ways to communicate their needs to their teachers and future bosses. In Homework Solutions for Weary Students and Their Parents students learn how to identify their challenges and how to communicate what they need with others. Former students claim it is the most valuable career tool they learned in third grade.
- Teachers are not mind readers and spend extra time trying to figure out what students need. When. children advocate for themselves, they take the guesswork out of instruction given by teachers and lightens the teachers’ responsibilities.
- During conferences, it’s important to include the students in the discussion. Whatever the teacher is going to tell the parents, needs to be shared with the students. If there is a problem with behavior, then it’s up to the children to find solutions to change the behaviors. Students need to see that they have important role in their own education. Placing the control in the hands of the parent is not fair, as many parents lack the same skills that plague the children.
Empower your children with effective communication skills. Teach them how to self-advocate, respectfully discuss differing opinions, and deal with conflicts with peers.
How have you encouraged your children to speak for themselves? I invite you to share. Any comments regarding this topic? I’d love to hear them.