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Help please - parent involvement

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by Ucan2, Mar 18, 2012.

  1. I need to improve parent involvement in assessment etc. in EYFS - I am new to this year group, there have been no courses and I keep stumbling on things that I have not been doing well enough. I have a parents evening coming up - do you think it would be a good idea to give the parents a short questionnaire to send back if they want to eg. what does your child like doing most at home? What improvements have you seen? Is this the sort of thing I should be doing? I do greet children/parents every morning and am available after school for any problems but I have never asked for any input on child assessments.I would appreciate your views.
     
  2. I need to improve parent involvement in assessment etc. in EYFS - I am new to this year group, there have been no courses and I keep stumbling on things that I have not been doing well enough. I have a parents evening coming up - do you think it would be a good idea to give the parents a short questionnaire to send back if they want to eg. what does your child like doing most at home? What improvements have you seen? Is this the sort of thing I should be doing? I do greet children/parents every morning and am available after school for any problems but I have never asked for any input on child assessments.I would appreciate your views.
     
  3. LauraJeanD

    LauraJeanD New commenter

    Hi Ucan2
    At our school we send out "WOW forms" which the parents fill in and send in with theri child if their child achieves something special at home. For some this could be something as simple as sleeping all through the night, others it might be attempting to write their first sentence etc. These wow forms are shared in the class and then displayed on the wow board and eventually go into their learning journals. My kids have now started to fill some in themselves about other children in the class "Billy helped me build a box" or whatever :)

    Parents also come in once a term to look at Learning Journals with their child (although they are welcome to come in whenever they wish to do this too) and write a comment to be stuck in.
     
  4. Our parents contribute to their child's "LearningDiary/Journal"...I send home strips of "Wow" stickers (sheets of blank labels/stickers with "Wow" written at the top.) Parents record observations of things their child does at home (exactly the same as you would be doing in the classroom)..then they send them into school and I stick them in their learning diaries. It sometimes takes a bit of training/guidance so that they know what sort of thing to write- I tend to have a focus each week. On my friday newsletter I write something such as "This week we would like you to use your Wow stickers to tell us about any writing which your child does at home." I pick areas I need to focus on and give examples of the types of things they might observe their child doing. I try to make it clear that I'd like examples of "umprompted/independent/undirected" learning!
    Some parents never fill in any stickers and have never returned one...others do them weekly and give me something each week! Some send in photos to go with the stickers.
    We also do "whats happeneing here?" sheets...i print a photo of their child doing something at school. Write a very brief explanation of what is going on in the picture in a box titled "school says...."
    Then underneath the photo there are 2 speech bubbles...1 saying "child says"....and 1 saying "parent says"...The idea is that they share the photo with their child. The child tells them what is happening/what they were doing/learning about...and the parent records it in the child's words in the box. Followed by a parent comment. These also get stuck in the child's learning diary.

    As for asking parents about what their child like to do at home etc..we tend to do this in September (or in the summer before they start school.) But I guess you could ask now if you feel you would gain some useful information?





     
  5. Hi,
    In order to get parents involved we have an acheivement box. The parents were told about this box at the beginning of the year and they are encouraged to share home achievements with us by noting it down and asking their children to put it in the achievement box of a morning. We then check our achievement box regularly and share them with the class. The children love this moment in the spot light. After this we then stick the information into their learning journeys. Like always some parents contribute more than others and the type of achievements vary from learning to ride their bike without stablisers to making their bed that morning.
    Hope this helps!
     
  6. I like the idea of children filling in Wow sheets for things they've seen others do. Children can be very positive of each others' achievements.
    I also really like the idea of photos with 'What's happening here?' for teachers, children and parents to comment. Must try both of these ideas!
     
  7. A tip for the "Whats Happening Here?" sheets..some parents need a clear example of what sort of thing to write in the parent comment box/speech bubble...some of my parents took it literally...and wrote exactly word for word the questions they had asked their child.For example...they'd written and laid it out like this:
    1.) What are you doing in this photo?
    2.) Why were you doing that?
    3.) Who were you playing with?
    and then in the "child comment" box had written their childs answers. ...All I really wanted was a brief comment on how happy/enthusiastic/keen their child had been to talk about the photo. After further clarification, parents now write much more useful comments. for example- Last week I sent home photos of our children celebrating the "Holi Festival"...and received comments such as:
    "Billy was very keen to share this photo with me. He talked excitedly and told me he had been celebrating "Holi." He told me that some people "throw paint" at each other to celebrate. He could recall lots of information he had learnt about Holi and seemed to really enjoy the experience." (I have found comments like this much more useful- but it's taken quite a lot of clarification for some parents to realise that I dont literally need them to record the questions they interrogated their child with!! lol) It's a nice way of gathering insight from school and home!


     
  8. Fabulous ideas - thanks everyone. I really like the wow sheets and think children filling them in for each other is a great idea. I did get 'All about me' booklets completed by parents before they started but wasn't sure how to continue to show parental involvement.
     
  9. frustum

    frustum Lead commenter

    As a parent, I'd have liked this. We were invited to tell the pre-school about things they'd done, but I never knew where to start - I could have given them examples for lots of things. If I'd known where they could do with more evidence, I could happily have provided that.
     
  10. hurny

    hurny New commenter

    I have an 'All About Me at Home and Out and About' booklet I made which goes home during the child's focus week (once per term) titles in it are
    'This week I have enjoyed.......',
    'At the moment I am really interested in.....',
    then I have a section with the six areas of learning and suggestions as to what they could write about,
    then on the back page: 'Next steps in my learning' 'At home I will be............' 'At school I would like to learn........'
    The return rate is high and I get some really interesting comments in them.
    I also put a comments sheet in their home learning activity folder so parents can comment on their learning as well as a weekly news section to keep them up to date with what is going on in the class.
    I like the idea of more focussed parent observations and might add this to the 6 areas section of my booklet.
     
  11. This sounds ike a fab thing Hurney - I am struggling to visualis it - are you able to share this to the resource bank so we could see it?
    We use 'WOW' Cheque books - similiar to the sticker sheets, but in the form of a colourful cheque book - WOW...Today I was so proud when/We were pleased when/X is so clver((kind?Helpful etc) then room for parents to complete e.g. WOW Last night X stayed in his bed all night. X is so clever he read al his book to his sister. X is so kind he shared his favourite toy with his friend etc
    They go great - although they do seem to be tailing off now.
    We share them with the class then pop them in their learning journal files x
     
  12. I have 'Look what I can do at home...' books that are large A4 books with a letter inside explaining what they're for.
    The idea is that the child (or parent) fills one page each week in showing something they have done at home.
    Some children write a sentence or draw a picture, parents sometimes stick photo's in of their child riding their bike or swimming, climbing a tree etc.
    Sometimes I send home a focus e.g. think of some healthy food or draw pictures beginning with s.
    Some parents write a short entry descrbing something they have done e.g visit to the theatre etc.
    A few parents don't do anything and they are still blank, others obviously have drawn the pictures which makes me smile.
    Lou
     
  13. I read this thread the other day and loved the idea of the 'wow' sheets. Mine go home, with a letter to explain what they are, tomorrow! The other two Reception teachers are also going to send them home. Thank you for the idea!
     

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