By Julie Sanders
The year Lori’s oldest son, Max, was in my first-grade classroom, she often came to work one-on- one with children, assisting in projects, or partner read.
Since she had an infant, she would bring a car seat with her little one strapped, sleeping while she helped out or just spent time in the room. Max loved school that year and blossomed in every way.
A few weeks into Max’s second-grade year, Lori stopped by after school one day to ask me a question. There at the classroom door, her eyes filled with tears as she said, “What should I do? I want to be part of Max’s school world this year, but the teacher said she really doesn’t have a place for parents in the classroom.”
Sometimes it isn’t easy to get into your child’s classroom.
As a teacher, I found an occasional overzealous parent who secretly wanted to watch my every move and scope out other children, but most parents just really want to be informed and included in their child’s school life.
Classrooms are better when parents are welcome.
How classrooms benefit from parental involvement:
- Children feel more secure and thrive.
- Learning needs are more readily addressed.
- Parents have a more realistic view of their child.
- Teachers have a lighter workload.
- Schools find partners in the community.
- Everyone wins.
The reason many classroom doors are hard to pry open boils down to fear.
Fear from teachers that they will be criticized; that parents will get their feelings hurt; that children will be distracted; that gossip will be spread; or that the workload will become heavier.
Read more: Julie Sanders, The Mom Initiative