As we are continually working for our students to have more ownership of their learning, we think it is essential that they have a place at the table when conferences take place next week (Tuesday, September 23rd and Thursday, September 25th). What we are introducing is not a student led conference, but instead a student involved conference. The teacher will be the facilitator of the conversation, which will actively involve both the parent(s) and the student.
"Students - when given the chance - can prove remarkably insightful about the quality of their work and what they need to do to improve it."
- ‘Student Involved Conferences’ ASCD Education Update
"The conferences are about the children and their learning. They are about where the children have come from and where they are going. They are about how their parents and I can support their learning journey. It only makes sense for them to be there, too."
- Kathy Cassidy, ‘Student-Led Parent Conferences: How They Work in My Primary Classroom”We are encouraging parents to bring their child with them to his/her conference so that we can have a student involved conference.
- The teacher will ask parents if they have any questions/comments.
- The teacher will review the process of the conference.
- The student, then the parent, then the teacher share three strengths the student has demonstrated as a learner.
- The student, then the parent, then the teacher share two areas the student needs to work on as a learner.
- The student articulates goals (no more than two or three) for future work (with assistance, as needed, from the parents and the teacher). Each party pledges specific kinds of support for the goals.
- The teacher answers questions, recaps, and concludes the conference.
Also, we ask that parents begin to give thought to the strengths and areas for growth that they feel their child has as a learner, as well as how to contribute to their academic improvement. As we finish-up benchmark testing in the areas of math, reading, and writing, expect those results to go home next Friday, September 19th. This will be information that may help parents when thinking about their child's strengths and areas for growth.
Thanks, and we look forward to this first round of conferences!