While filming in an elementary school in Richmond, California, earlier this year, we saw a clever idea in a kindergarten class. The teacher was building an inclusive community in his classroom of English-language learners by encouraging parents to come to his class and participate directly in their kids' learning.
While not every parent is able to volunteer time during the school day, for those that are able, it can be incredibly rewarding for everyone involved. In the video above, teacher Douglas Wheeler of Bayview Elementary explains why it's a win-win situation when parents are able to come to school -- the parents feel connected to what's happening in the classroom, and the learning gets extended beyond the school day.
Since Wheeler is fluent in Spanish, there is no language barrier in communicating with his students' parents.
If you're looking for more resources for supporting English-language learners, start with our ELL topic page. Here are three of our favorites:
- "Strategies and Resources for Supporting English-Language Learners" by Todd Finley
- "7 Tips for Building Positive Relationships with English-Language Learners" by Larry Ferlazzo and Katie Hull Sypnieski
- "10 Tips for Teaching English-Language Learners" by Ayanna Cooper
Want to learn more about the best ways to stay connected with parents? Check out our Home-to-School Connections topic page. Here are three great starting points:
- "Home-to-School Connections: Resource Roundup"
- "5 Tips for Engaging Parent Volunteers in the Classroom" by Karen Bantuveris
- "The Beginners' Guide to Connecting Home and School" by Tabitha Dell'Angelo and Joanna Maulbeck