Parent talks to the teacher - a guide to effective dialogue

They have not achieved what they came for. And maybe you have to start with this: why am I going to the teacher? Parent talks to the teacher. 

Parent talks to the teacher - a guide to effective dialogue

A parent comes to a teacher and ... it is different here. Sometimes they get along, sometimes they don't. However, it is generally believed that parents very often leave school feeling that they have not achieved what they came for. And maybe you have to start with this: why am I going to the teacher? Parent talks to the teacher.

Before I go to school

It does not matter whether this conversation takes place on the initiative of the educator or ours. As a parent, I have to answer the question of what I expect before entering school. What has to happen during this quarter of an hour, maybe an hour, so that I can say that I am satisfied with this meeting? That I (and my child) made some profits?

It is good to remember that we have the right to any information that may be of use to our child. And they have the right to use the entire offer of the school, as well as to receive any help that the school can provide. And again, questions: do I know what the school's offer is? What can I expect from teachers to help my child grow? If we know the school's offers and possibilities, we can formulate our expectations. If not, ask.

Everyone - teacher, pedagogue, school psychologist, or headmaster - is obliged to answer our questions. The parent does not need to know the core curriculum and the details of the specificity of the school's work. However, he or she has the right to ask about them and should have wide access to them (school website, school library, consultation with teachers, educator, etc.). It is in the interest of the parent (and child) to get to know the school's activities well. This is the first step in preparing for your school visits. Now another one.

I arrange an interview with the teacher

Before talking to the teacher or educator, ask yourself the next questions: What is my knowledge about what I want to talk about? If we are talking about an incident involving my child, do I know exactly what it was about? Can I give the facts that the child is referring to? Can I name my and my child's emotions related to it?

A parent who is well prepared for the interview will say, for example: From my son's story, I know that the incident took place during PE classes. The quarrel broke out when determining the composition of the teams. The boys used obscene words towards each other. John, during the conversation with me, said that he is ashamed of it now. But it is also said that his friends did not defend him and encouraged him and Stas to quarrel and struggle. I am sorry that this has happened. I will still talk to John about how to deal with emotions in such situations. How do you see this incident? Can you help my son deal with this situation?

Grading Criteria

If the issue that brings us to school is related to grades or the way we are graded, it would be wise to check what grading criteria the teacher provided at the beginning of the year. Here are the next questions to prepare us for the interview: Does the degree that elicits my objection comply with these criteria? What emotions does this situation evoke in me? How is my child feeling about it?

For example, My daughter is to receive a good grade in art at the end of the six-month period. There is no grade in the grading list for participating in an art competition in which the daughter took 4th place in the area. She has also participated in several competitions at the school level. The evaluation criteria state that participation in art competitions will be appreciated in partial evaluations and at the end of the half-year and the end of the year. Ania and I are disappointed and disappointed. The daughter put a lot of enthusiasm and effort into preparing the competition entries. She also hoped for a better grade in connection with this commitment. Can you explain it to me somehow?

If such conversations are difficult for us, it is good to imagine the teacher and simulate such a conversation at home. It is easier than to use whatever words you want in an actual meeting. It's also easier to control your emotions.

Meeting at school

But we talk to others using more than just words. Our emotions and our body are involved in the conversation. You have to control what we communicate to the teacher at this level all the time. (And the teacher, too, is a human! He has emotions and a body that speaks to us! Let us be careful and "read" the messages well). Let's take a look at these elements of communication.

Language: The most effective way to communicate is the so-called the language

When ... (description of the behavior), I ... (the feeling that accompanies us), because ... (description of the situation). I wish¦ (need).

For example: When John told me about what happened at PE, I got very upset because I hoped that my son already understood what cooperation with his friends was.

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Or: When I read the proposed grades, I felt very sad because I saw how hard my daughter was working for a very good plastic grade. I wanted her work to be appreciated.

By communicating in this way, I avoid misunderstandings because I name exactly what I think and feel.

Emotions: They are always first. They run faster in our brain than intellectual processes. If we are not prepared for one of them, we will not be able to master it. Then we do things that we regret later: raise our voices, use indecent words, insult (someone or ourselves ...), etc. If we ask ourselves the following questions before the meeting: How can I react to this situation? What could be difficult for me? - then we have a chance to stay in the JA scheme and name emotions. We also have a chance to base our behavior on the intellect and thus its effects will be more predictable.


For example, let's say: I was saddened by this situation. I am sorry because I feel my child's work has not been properly appreciated. However, we remember that we do not know the reason why Ania has no grade entered. Maybe it's just an oversight, a mistake that happens with busy teachers. We're not assuming anything. We talk, ask, communicate the state of my emotions and that of my child.

articalure, appearance: Straight back, smile - at least as a greeting and goodbye, a firm handshake. It is worth taking care of an outfit that will emphasize that the situation is important to us. Short pants for a man or a see-through blouse for a woman will not help to build a good atmosphere of conversation. We sit down, we accept a snack - if it is offered by the teacher. We try to maintain eye contact and keep a friendly expression on our faces.

Do not have to agree with the teacher, but we should listen to his arguments and present ours. Assuming that the school (the teacher) wants to harm our child is blocking the possibility of communication. If the teacher is not listening, you have to demand it, for example, allow me to present my side of the story. Please let me finish my thought. / I hope you will listen to me now. / Can you repeat it again? I did not understand.

It should also be remembered that the teacher has the right to demand the same from us.

After the meeting

When we leave school, we analyze what happened. And again we come back to the questions from before the meeting: Have I achieved my goal? If not, what prevented me from achieving it? How am I doing now? If wrong, what do I need? Maybe repeat this conversation in the presence of, for example, the tutor or the headmaster? How did I benefit from this meeting? How will my child be? What should I do before my next meeting or at my next school meeting? Finally, I will return to the first sentence: The parent (human) comes to the teacher ... and the teacher also the parent (human) ... And maybe this is where the effective way of communication between parents and educators should be sought.