Channeling your frustrations into effective communication gets results. We no longer can head to school and meet with a teacher. Instead, we are digitally communicating and sometimes not as effective as we might wish. Check out three tips to help communicate positively with your child’s teachers.
- Everyone has been thrown into a new learning curve; remember to communicate with patience and understanding.For many, learning a new platform is the norm when switching to an online classroom. However, teachers are learning right alongside you and your child. They are figuring out things as their district is implementing and working to meet all the challenges involved with moving traditional to online learning. At Method Schools, we host webinars for parents and created an Online Prep Course for students to complete when coming on board with us. I learned early on as I transitioned to online teaching that students and parents were as frustrated as I was and needed to leave behind expectations as we dived into it together.
- Be clear and concise on the issues you need help and understanding. We can easily become bogged down with our frustrations and confusion. I know that it becomes overwhelming, and I have been down this rabbit hole myself. Try writing a list of what is unclear. Write what you need to know next to it. Parent and student surveys are commonplace within our organization. Using that data, we have worked to eliminate the confusion by addressing the most commonly voiced frustrations for our families. Ask questions that fall into the “What does my child need to complete work” and “Do you have a schedule you can email me?” Without communicating with your child’s teacher or school, you may not find the answers, resulting in more frustration.
- Avoid getting emotional in your communication. Without meaning, we often let our frustration run into our email correspondence. Even the most patient of teachers can become entangled in the emotions of the communication and lose sigh of the issue that is being conveyed. Try to focus on what is the most important information you need and write that intent. I often hear from parents upset and frustrated as they start the online learning journey. It is understandable because online learning is a whole language of its own. I've read emails that say, "it need to happen now because..." or "I can't figure this out and you're not helping, and my child is lost and upset." Through it all, we have to sort through and find the thread that lets us know what exactly the family needs. Yes, frustration can overshadow but try focusing on letting the teacher know what information you need. Ask for resources, either academic or technical, because most often that is where you can find helpful information.