Parent-teacher communication is one of the pillars of a child’s academic success and overall well-being. Effective communication with parents is critical to establishing a parent-teacher partnership as it ensures cooperation, builds mutual trust, and helps teachers learn more about the children in their care.
Why is Communication with Parents Important?
While early childhood educators are experts in teaching and child development, parents are experts on their children. They can give precious insights into:
- a child’s development
- preferred learning styles
- potential developmental issues
Parents best know what motivates their children, what appeals to them, what they are good at, and which developmental issues they may be experiencing.
For that reason, effective and ongoing communication with your child’s teachers can help tailor the learning approach to your child’s unique needs.
On the other hand, teachers who spend most of the day with a child are valuable resources about the child’s development and behaviour management. Their daily observations ensure that parents don’t miss a bit of their kids’ development, but they also help parents provide the best care possible for their children.
Therefore, a positive relationship between parents and childcare providers is essential to providing high-quality care for young children.
How Communication with Parents Helps Facilitate Work Progress or Child Development
At Ilham Child Care, we highly value the importance of effective communication with parents.
We are aware that each child has a preferred learning style. While some children are visual learners, others thrive when the information is presented auditory or verbally. Logical learners favour using logic and reasoning, whereas kinaesthetic and tactile learners best understand information through tactile presentations and hands-on experiences.
Effective communication with our parents helps us facilitate learning in different learning styles to promote our students’ cognitive skills such as problem-solving, critical thinking, working memory, and getting the most of their early education.
We use various channels to maintain ongoing communication with our families in these challenging times of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We prefer talking to our students’ parents in person. Our early childhood teachers engage in face-to-face communication with parents during the drop-off and pick-up times.
However, as face-to-face meetings with parents are not always possible, we developed other communication means. Some of them are:
- LittleLives – a third-party mobile application that allows private conversations between parents and school, including an e-portfolio for their kids’ progress
- WhatsApp – alternative private communication platform between school and parents
- Calls/Zoom – communication platform we primarily use for emergencies (calls) or parent-teacher conferences (Zoom)
- Parent surveys and feedback forms
- The Ilham insider (monthly newsletter)
Being a good listener is the backbone of effective communication with parents. Good listening skills allow you to collect valuable information about your students and show parents that you value their perspectives, observations, experience, and insights.
Using open-ended questions and reflecting on what parents say allows you to get more information and ensure that you understand what parents have said.
Being open and honest when talking to parents ensures mutual understanding and support in a joint effort to help kids reach their milestones.
Always speak to parents positively and respectfully, asking for their input and giving accurate information about your observations.
Raising concerns with parents is also an essential part of child care operations. Sometimes teachers have to discuss concerns about a child’s developmental issues, behaviour challenges, or well-being in general.
We cultivate a problem-solving approach that helps us work in partnership with parents to identify the problem, cooperatively come up with possible solutions, and review the effects of our joint action after some time. Openly talking about concerns when they come up enables us to handle them efficiently and act in a child’s best interest.
Our qualified early childhood educators maintain continuing conversation providing information on daily accomplishments and challenges such as:
- Potty training milestones or entrance exams for primary school/madrasah – our teachers will communicate with parents about how their child is doing and follow through at home. This helps promote consistency in the child’s development.
- We believe in inclusive learning. So, by sharing our observations of the child, we can intervene if needed so that the child can be assessed accordingly. This way, we can adjust and adapt to help your child based on their exact learning needs!
- We highly value our parents’ involvement and contribution to school events or school-related activities. Here are some examples and roles given to parents in our childcare centre:
- Pre-COVID 19, we used to have parent chaperons for our excursions, or as we call it, learning journeys. Many of our parents regularly volunteer to assist our teachers with these trips to external locations, and their help is priceless!
- We also provided free soccer clinics previously where we had parents join in and play soccer together with our students and boss, Mr. Shaik. It was loads of fun for everyone!
- We also have specific themed related lessons such as Occupation Day, where we have parents do ’a show and tell’ about their job, for the Ilhamites to learn about the different community helpers and careers, etc.
- ICC has an annual parents’ feedback form to gather insights and inputs from parents on how we can improve in all aspects – curriculum, operations, marketing, etc.
We believe each child is exceptional, with unique sets of skills, interests, and behaviour. In partnership with parents and caregivers, we strive to provide an environment that encourages free exploration, hands-on experiences, multi-sensory learning, and independence to help children reach their milestones across all aspects of development.