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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Open House

We did something different this year. As long as I have been a teacher at my school, we had never before had a PRE-school Open House. Tonight, though, we did.

Apparently, our assistant principal and testing coordinator figured out how to send a phone message to all of our enrolled kids, and they also put up fliers at stores around the area, announcing a "Come meet the teacher" night on campus.

At first, we really weren't too keen on having to stay an extra 2 hours, but it really wasn't that bad. It actually played out a lot like parent conference nights usually do at my school. The Gen Ed teachers mostly worked in their room and were unbothered (I think 2 of them had 1 parent each show up, and another had 5) while us ESL and Bilingual teachers had a relatively constant stream. I met the parents of about 8 of my kids, and it looked like my partner met at least 12.

I also got to see a couple of my kids from last year, which was very nice.

The only real bad thing? The event ran from 4:00 to 6:00. The air conditioning in our hall was shut off at 4:50. That's not too pleasant on a 100+ degree day.

Got a lot done around my room today, but I always feel like I'm not ready at the beginning of the year. One more day, 2 fantasy football drafts over the weekend, and a most likely restless night on Sunday, and we'll see just how unready I am come Monday morning!


Hooty Hoo said...

That's too bad that you didn't get a better turn out. We have always, in my 7 years, had a pre-start of school welcome back night. We get a fantastic turnout. Its a great way to connect with parents and students, let them know what to expect.

I've been in middle school for the last six years, but this year have been place in Junior Kindergarten. This year I will be trying to convince parents that this is a good step for their child. For the younger students, it's a great way to get to see their school with their families and not feel too scared.

I hope if your school continues this that you find ways to draw in more families. One way, for middle and high school, is to hand out schedules. Good luck!

Melissa B. said...

Ah, the back-to-school ritual. When my kiddos were in elementary school, we always attended an "open house" in the morning of the Friday before the start of school. A big, big your teacher, find out who's in your class. I think the school still does those open houses, but a lot of the older kids find out their schedules, who's in the their classes, etc., via Facebook.

kherbert said...

We have had meet the teacher since before I started teaching. It is nice that the parents can drop off supplies. I had 13 out of 22 kids. I'm not sure what my partner teach had because she had to leave bang on time because of family stuff.

The other math teacher across the hall had 8 out of 16 kids.

IMC Guy said...

We have our Meet the Teacher night on Wednesday. Since I'm not a classroom teacher anymore, I get to stand near the front doors, greet the families and students, and direct them to their classroom. It's only 1.5 hours so it shouldn't be too bad.

I also need to prepare for fantasy football drafts - one on Saturday and the other next Tuesday.

Angela said...

Well, first I'd like to thank Hailei for letting us know about that Ugg Boot sale in the UK. How will anything I have to contribute to this conversation ever compare to that thoughtful comment?

Moving on from there...I love the idea of a before-school open house. We do 'meet and greets' in which parents/kids can visit the classroom on the Friday before school starts, which is helpful...but being able to explain things like HW, supplies, forms that need to be signed, etc. BEFORE school starts would be helpful.

Last year our own house was on the 9th day of school. Loved that. This year it's around the 15th day. I say: the earlier, the better.

P.S. If Hailei is a friend of yours, my sincerest apologies. Heh heh.

dkleine said...

I'm using a great free resoruce from Cathy Seeley (past president of NCTM) for parent night this year to help families understand the importance of math and how they can help their students. You can download A Math Message to Families at It's from her new book Faster Isn't Smarter: Messages About Math, Teaching, and Learning in the 21st Century. All her messages include resources and discussion questions for educators and families. Hope you all find this helpful as well!