Concept by: Eszter Salamon
The year of school closures has put a larger than ever emphasis on teacher-parent collaboration. Parents started better understanding and appreciating the work of teachers, and teachers became more motivated to consider parents and caregivers as partners.
This course helps teachers identify successful strategies and methods for maintaining an active collaboration with parents and for improving their partnerships.
As a participant, you will be supported to better understand your own attitudes towards parents as partners and identify elements that can promote collaboration. You will also dive into some literature showing the benefits of engaging with parents, and we will bust some myths about “hard-to-reach” parents. Finally, you will discover strategies for more effective learning at home, that can in turn support the learning of children at school.
By the end of the course, you will have participated in self-reflection activities for individual work and for working with peers and parents. You will have acquired novel practical ideas and you will be able to refer to background readings to improve your relationships with your students’ parents. You will begin to see parents and caregivers in a new light: they will have turned into helpful allies in promoting the wellbeing and learning of your students.
The course will help the participants to:
- Understand the role of parents in the learning of their children.
- Understand children’s and parents’ rights.
- Bust the myths of “hard-to-reach” parents.
- Learn more about the difference between involvement and engagement.
- Identify their own attitudes towards parents and potential obstacles to partnering with them.
- Build their own partnership strategy and methodology for successful parental engagement.
The schedule describes likely activities but may differ significantly based on the requests of the participants, and the trainer delivering the specific session. Course modifications are subject to the trainer’s discretion. If you would like to discuss a specific topic, please indicate it at least 4 weeks in advance.
Day 1 – Course introduction
- Introduction to the course, the school, and the external week activities.
- Icebreaker activities.
- Getting to know each other.
- Understanding the diversity of the group.
Let’s get started
- Building a school that offers partnerships with parents – hands-on activity.
- Changing perspectives, in the other’s shoes.
- Exploring your comfort zone.
Day 2 – Mapping one’s own experience
- Active listening for working with parents.
- Personal mapping.
- Identity Wheel – understanding how your own identity impacts partnerships.
- Opinion line – where do I stand.
- Roleplay activities of parent-teacher situations.
- You and your conflicts.
- Designing conflict management activities.
Day 3 – Getting closer to parents
- Parental engagement theories and putting them into practice.
- What research shows about the impact of parents on children’s learning.
- Draw and erase the picture of the hard-to-reach parent.
- Teacher well-being in teacher-parent partnerships.
Day 4 – Promoting inclusion while partnering with parents
- Children’s rights and parents’ rights.
- Understanding multiple inclusion through role play.
- Exploring the inclusiveness of your school.
- Moments with minority parents.
- How your personal perspectives and identity impact your work with minority parents.
- Parent-to-parent support in parent-teacher partnerships.
Day 5 – Effective strategies and tips
- Gender issues in parent-teacher partnerships.
- Building on strength, overcoming weaknesses.
- Safe third spaces.
- Rainy and sunny moments of working with parents.
- Developing your own partnership strategy.
Day 6 – Course closure
- Course evaluation: round-up of acquired competencies, feedback, and discussion.
- Awarding of the course Certificate of Attendance.
- Excursion and other external cultural activities.
- Teachers: primary, secondary, vocational, adult, special needs;
- Teacher trainers;
- Careers officers, educational guides and counselors;
- Managers of schools.