SchoolFamily Voices

Connie McCarthy is passionate about her work as a teacher of young children. She has devoted her entire career to making sure that her students do well at school, right from the start. Connie has an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education, and a Master’s Degree in Special Education. She has been teaching first grade in East Providence, R.I. for 23 years, where she received the distinction of “Highly Qualified Teacher” by the Rhode Island State Board of Regents. Connie also taught nursery school for four years, and published numerous articles on early education in East Bay Newspapers in Bristol, R.I. She’s also been published in PTO Today Magazine. She lives with her husband, Brian, and has a daughter and a son, both young adults. Connie enjoys reading, writing about elementary education, and taking long walks with friends. During summer vacations, she likes to travel with her husband. She also loves reading readers’ comments on her weekly blog posts.

"Tips for Building a Great Parent-Teacher Relationship"

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A good “Parent-Teacher” relationship is an integral part of your child’s school success.

Parents are often unsure of how to approach their child’s teacher. Teachers welcome input and help from parents, but the number of students in their class can limit the time individually spent with each parent.

Here are some tips for successfully working with your child’s teacher to ensure a terrific school year:

  • Ask the teacher how he or she likes to be contacted. (By a written note, phone call, email, etc.)
  • Volunteer in the classroom (Whatever time you can give will be greatly appreciated!)
  • Join the PTO. This lets you learn more about how the school functions, and presents opportunities to interact with other parents.
  • Support school rules.
  • Attend all scheduled parent conferences.
  • Initiate a parent conference, at any time, if there is a specific problem that needs to be addressed.
  • Don’t go over the teacher’s head! Always discuss any issues or problems concerning your child with your child’s teacher first. Give the teacher every opportunity to solve the problem.
  • Be aware that the teacher has many resources available to help guide your child through difficult situations.
  • Keep expectations realistic.
  • Remember that starting school is a magical time in your child’s life. Know that you and your child’s teacher have the same goal in mind. You both want your child to have a successful school year.

A good start in school will put your child on a path to be a life-long learner!


#1 susan bielan 2009-10-24 00:34
good advice

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Do you allow your children to watch TV or play on the computer before doing their homework?