Wednesday, February 12, 2014

4 Steps to Make Your Military Parent/Teacher Interviews Positive

By Nanette
The Sailor's Woman

If you're lucky enough to live in a mild climate, spring is in the air.  If you're not--hang in there!  Winter will end eventually.
The Sailor's Woman

Spring brings all kinds of good things:  March break, more sunshine, less rain and a feeling of accomplishment because we made it through another winter.  In many school districts, spring also means report cards and parent/teacher interviews.

Disclosure:  I'm a teacher.  I'm not going to pretend every teacher out there is top notch, but I can honestly say that each one I know wants his/her students to succeed.  As mom (or dad) you share this goal, so parent/teacher interviews should be easy peasy, right?  Sadly, this isn't always the case so here are some suggestions to make every one's life a little easier.

1.  Tell your child's teachers about their deployed parent.  You're under increased stress, right?  So are the kids, even if you shield them from worrying news.  (Besides, with Internet access, this is just about impossible once they're over eleven.)  Give everyone a break and let their teachers know to watch for signs of stress in your children.

2.  Accept that children often behave differently at school.  Teachers aren't as emotionally invested in your kids as you are.  If they report naughty behaviour, don't automatically assume they're lying, delusional or evil witches out to get your kids.  Try to work with them to make your child's school hours as wonderful as their time at home with you.

The Sailor's Woman
3.  Many schools have switched to student-led conferences.  This means the teacher is in the class to answer any questions, while the child shows mom or dad a pre-selected assortment of work.  Usually this includes a major art project, some writing (often the child's daily journal) and a math activity.  If you have concerns about your child's progress or think the work isn't challenging enough to let your little star shine, request a private meeting with the teacher.  Sure, it's a pain to have to go back again, but the visit with your child should be a positive experience.

4.  Remember--no body's perfect.  Our relationships can be fraught with misunderstandings, dislike and even conflict.  If you or your child don't click with a teacher, evaluate the situation.  If you don't suspect neglect, abuse or other wrong doing, make it a teachable moment.  Sometimes we get thrown in with people we don't particularly like.  Learning to get along with them is a valuable skill.

Don't forget--nothing's permanent.  It's almost spring so the end of the school year is just over the horizon.

About Nanette
The Sailor's Woman
Hi, I’m Nanette.  Like most women, I wear many hats.  I’m a mom, a teacher, a Canadian Naval Officer’s wife, a blogger at The Sailor’s Woman and a novelist.

I have degrees from the University of British Columbia and the University of Moncton. I began writing as a child and I've published many short stories and essays.

In June my husband left for Afghanistan.  Before going overseas he was out of the province for about six weeks training for his adventure.  It’s been a long haul and it’s not over. Field lives on Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

Buy Love in a Small Village on Amazon CanadaAmazon US, or on Amazon UK!

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