For the first five years of your child’s life he’s had the same teacher(s) every day, all year long--you. His home has been his main learning environment, his health, his interests and his general well-being are all due to the explorations, discoveries and learning time you’ve had together. That changes when he goes to kindergarten. That doesn’t mean you’ve lost your job although you are no longer plan out or know what he’s learning each day. Parents and teachers need to work together to forge a home-school connection that will give your child the best opportunity for school success. It is well worth the effort although getting involved in your child’s education isn’t always easy. Every school or school district has different rules, hours and unique ways of dealing with situations. Getting involved means knowing all about the school, its policies and its plans for the future so you can decide whether it aligns with your personal philosophies. For instance, it’s a good idea to know that now, especially if you’re not comfortable with the idea if when your child gets to middle school he’ll have the option of attending single-gender classrooms.

Getting involved in your child's education

Yet some parents would love to see their children have the opportunity to go to year round school and some parents do not think zero tolerance policies work in schools. Whether or not you can help your child formulate his path to success, knowing that’s important to you and how the school views the issue plays a crucial role. He’s likely to be filled with stories about what his teacher said and what his teacher did when your child comes home from school each day. One of the best ways to be an active participant in his stories is to know a little bit more about his teacher. You will have a way of having a more in-depth conversation with your child, whether it be finding out how she rates credential-lies, attending open house or simply initiating an ongoing dialogue so she knows you’re interested in what’s going on in the classroom. Sometimes you may have to be prepared to deal with not liking what you learn about your child’s teacher. Maybe other parents have had bad experiences with her. It’s better to deal with your concerns without getting him involved unless your child is already in the middle of it, no matter what your concern. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t address the issues, just that the smoother the home-school connection looks to your child, the easier his transition to school will be. Learning doesn’t end when your child walks out the school door at the end of the day. Not only will he be practicing his skills with homework that may require help. However, everything he’s learned in school can also be applied and extended at home. Don’t be surprised or take it personally if he all of sudden thinks you don’t know what you’re talking about, however.