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  • Writer's pictureWork & Play

Parent-Teacher Conference: 5 Questions to Ask your Preschool Teacher

Updated: Mar 13

This is a time of year when teachers start to assess student progress, reflect on areas of growth, and note areas where there may be gaps in learning. At Work & Play, we’ve sat on both sides of the table, leading conferences as teachers and receiving feedback as parents. We can confirm that both sides of the table have their pros and cons! 

With spring parent-teacher conferences right around the corner, we have some tips. Remember that the spring conference is different than the initial conference in the fall. It’s a time to share about the learning and growth that has happened over these past months. Teachers know the children so much better than at the first conference. Also, your child has likely settled in so you might hear about areas that are challenging - like listening or keeping their hands on their own body. Your little one is more comfortable and familiar so it’s a fairly typical progression to be testing a little bit. No need to panic!

Conferences are a great time to learn about your child. Consider what questions you might ask. While “What can we do at home?” or “Is he/she kind?” are fine questions, they rarely result in meaty conversations. You have time with an educational expert! Ask for their unique input and perspective on your child.

Here are our top 5 questions:

Tell me about friendships. How does my child interact with others?

So often we want to know that our little ones are feeling connected and welcome in a class. Knowing how they connect with others will help you get to more about their personality and preferences. If they connect more on the playground, maybe physical play is their preference. If they love to chat at lunch time then quiiet, interactive activities might be where they shine. If they are a leader in dramatic play? Open-ended activities may suit them best.

Are there areas I could help my child gain independence?

Every child has an area that could use a little extra practice, especially in early childhood. Tasks as mundane as zipping a jacket or cleaning up without a reminder are real learning in preschool. Take note of the teacher’s observations and see how you can support growth at home.

When does my child seem most engaged at school?

We LOVE this question! As teachers, we love to ask parents when kids are most engaged outside of school. Why? It gives us a window into their interests, curiosity, and approach to learning. 

How does my child show kindness?

Kindness is a top priority for so many families. We love to share how to foster kind behaviors and mindsets in school. Asking for specifics of how your child shows kindness in the classroom will likely give you a lens into a side of your young child you may not get to see as often. It’s exciting to see young children develop their voices and personalities outside of home.

Trust your gut, parents. If you have a question or concern, share it with the teacher. 

Have a question that’s been weighing on you? Ask it! Better yet, ask it ahead of time in an email so the teacher can gather information to share. Partnering with teachers is an amazing way to help your child thrive in school.

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