For many educators, conferences are coming up soon, and it can be a stressful time of the school year. To help parents and educators prepare for parent-teacher conferences, we've rounded up a variety of web resources.
From ideas for highlighting student progress, to questions every parent should ask, these are some of our favorite articles and resources that cover parent-teacher conferencing. Hope you all have a great rest of the school year!
- Parent-Teacher Conference Tip Sheets for Principals, Teachers, and Parents: The Harvard Family Research Project produced these tip sheets with English and Spanish versions. The three sections on each sheet are written specifically for parents, teachers, and principals, and they are available as free PDF downloads. Another insightful resource from the Family Research Project is "Academic Parent-Teacher Teams: Reorganizing Parent-Teacher Conferences Around Data."
- Guide to Parent-Teacher Conferences From Scholastic: This collection of resources for educators focuses on measuring student progress and conducting meaningful conferences with parents. Scholastic also features a great parent-specific resource, "Make the Most of Your Teacher Conference," which offers ideas for what to do before, during, and after conferences.
- Parent-Teacher Conference Resources From Reading Rockets: This Reading Rockets article highlights literacy questions parents should ask, from suggestions for getting students reading at home to understanding your student's reading level. There are also some great links to other Reading Rockets resources, including PTC tips for parents of English-language learners on sister site ¡Colorín Colorado!
- TeacherVision’s Parent-Teacher Conference Resources: TeacherVision hosts a wealth of resources for parent-teacher conferences. There are conference forms, curated resources for getting parents involved, and a list of some of the best articles on parent-teacher conferences. A few favorites include: "Tips for a Successful Parent-Teacher Conference" and "Parent-Teacher Conferences: Before, During, and After." Plus, another great round-up to check out is the National Education Association's Parent-Teacher Conference page, which features practical articles and tips for parents and teachers.
- New Teacher Survival Guide Video: The Parent-Teacher Conference: This Teaching Channel video is great for new teachers, offering preparation ideas, a first-hand look at conducting a conference, and some great tips and strategies from parent-relationship expert Diane Feinstein. There are plenty of interesting tidbits packed into this ten-minute video, making it a perfect resource for educators of any experience level. Also, Teaching Channel's blog post, "Beyond Parent-Teacher Conferences: Building Connections That Last," by Lily Jones, provides useful advice for using conferences to springboard into continued dialogues with parents.
Inviting Students to Lead Conferences
Student-led conferences empower learners to take ownership of their accomplishments and their classroom goals. Yet, for many teachers, it can be a challenge figuring out how to best facilitate them. Recently, Edutopia examined how one school in Chicago uses student-led conferences to create opportunities for reflection, engagement, and agency.
You'll find some wonderful resources in that collection. Also, here are a few more ideas, guides, and tips for letting students take the lead during parent-teacher conferences:
- "When Students Lead Parent-Teacher Conferences" (ASCD's Educational Leadership)
- "A Step-by-Step Plan for Student-Led Conferences at the Elementary Level" (Teaching Channel)
- "A Guide to Student-Led Conferences" (Edudemic)
- "A Guide to Implementing Student-Led Conferences" (The Diary of a Not So Wimpy Teacher)
Parent-Teacher Conference Reading List
- "How to Have a Meaningful Parent-Teacher Conference" (Huffington Post)
- "Parent-Teacher Conferences: Parents’ How-To Guide" (Public School Review)
- "7 Questions to Ask at Your Parent/Teacher Conference" (CafeMom)
- "Tips for Parent-Teacher Conferencing" (Edutopia)
- "Making the Most of Parent-Teacher Conferences" (ASCD)
- "How To Make The Most Of Your 10 Minutes With Teacher" (NPR)
- "7 Ideas for Meaningful Parent-Teacher Conferences" (Education Week Teacher)
- "5 Tips for a Better Parent-Teacher Conference" (Schools of Thought/CNN)