H4 – Honor family/community involvement in the learning process. This standard speaks to the importance of communicating with the family/community as to the crucial role that they can have in participating in students’ learning. For this entry, I will focus specifically on family involvement. I recently participated in my school’s open house. The open house was an excellent opportunity to meet the parents/caretakers, let them know what their children will be working on in our classroom, and introduce ourselves if we hadn’t already met. The evidence provided below comes from the syllabus that my mentor teacher provided for the event.
This evidence speaks to the important role that the parents/family will play in our students’ education and the process of communicating this to the parents. The students spend time in each class recording some of the more important activities that they are working on in their planners. The direction is for the family to be actively involved with the students in their learning. I learned a great deal from attending this event. It was great to have the opportunity to interact with some of the parents, let them know that I will be doing my student teaching this year, and to begin the process of making connections. Gargiulo and Kilgo (2011), stress the importance of the family in the educational process when they say “the best type of relationship that can develop between families and professionals is one in which families are viewed as full-fledged partners” (p 78). They are speaking in particular of early childhood education. However, I think this partnership is equally important to maintain as students progress through schools. Students’ learning will be improved when their families take an active role in their education. Education can become a focus in all aspects of the students’ lives, in addition to the time they spend at school. As I progress through my internship, I will try and take every opportunity to dialogue with the parents/family about how their student is performing in class but also how the whole family is doing in general. I hope to establish an effective relationship/partnership that can make everyone feel comfortable and provide a solid safe base that will enable the students to meet their goals. In the near future, I will be attending an IEP meeting for a student that my mentor teacher oversees. I will continue to take advantage of opportunities that arise to make family connections.
Gargiulo, Richard, and Kilgo, Jennifer 3rd edition (2011). An Introduction To Young Children with Special Needs Birth Through Age 8. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.