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How to get the most out of parents' evening

Parents' evening
How to get the most out of parents' evening

Whether your child is at primary school or secondary school, parents’ evenings are a fantastic opportunity to find out as much as possible about your child’s education and identify any areas where your child’s learning needs more support. Atom’s Head of Education, Anna Masterson, shares her top tips for how to get the most out of parents’ evening.


Parents’ evening is a great opportunity to find out as much as possible about how your child is progressing in both their soft and academic skills. These meetings are only short, so it’s important to maximise the time as much as possible! Before heading into the meeting, consider your aims for the session and what you would like to get out of the meeting with your child's teachers.

1. Adopt a collaborative approach

Your child’s teachers want your child to thrive just like you do! View the relationship as a learning partnership where you are both advocating for your child's success. Even if there is something you are unhappy about, ultimately your child’s teacher is striving for your child to succeed too. Go in knowing that their teacher is on your side and you are going to solve any problems together.

2. Begin by asking about your child’s wellbeing

Above all else you want to know whether your child is or isn't happy at school. Are they kind? Do they work hard?

If your child is finding school life challenging, it's important to address that before you worry about their academic performance. Not only is feeling settled at school key to your child's wellbeing, they will also learn more effectively if they are happy.

Questions to ask your child's teacher:

  • How happy is my child at school?

  • Who are their friends?

  • Is my child kind to others? Do they follow the school values? What do we need to be talking to them about at home?

  • What can we do at home to make sure they understand the importance of hard work?

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3. Find out how your child is performing academically

You should aim to find out as much as possible about your child’s progress and attainment in English and maths. Usually, your child’s teacher will allow you to look at your child’s books.

Top tip: Ask to take your child's books and look at them outside the classroom after the meeting. Take a look at whether their work is being completed on time, the comments and marks the teacher has given, and whether progress is being made over time.

Questions to ask your child's teacher:

Reading:

  • Can my child read fluently when they are asked to read aloud?

  • Can they answer questions about the text they're reading?

  • Are they meeting the expectations for the year group? If not, what can we do at home? What interventions are school using?

  • Can you recommend any books for them to read outside school?

Writing:

  • How accurate is my child's handwriting, spelling, grammar and punctuation? How can we support them to improve?

  • Can I read some of my child's imaginative writing?

  • Are they meeting the expectations for the year group? If not, what can we do at home?

Maths:

  • How number fluent is my child? What do they need more practice in? How can I best support them?

  • Are they meeting the expectations for the year group? If not, what can we do at home? What interventions are the school using?


We hope that Anna’s tips help you to get the most out of your parents’ meetings this autumn!

Our team is on hand to support you and your family with your child's education. Chat with one of our Education Experts to get free advice about your child's academic progress:

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