How to become a kindergarten teacher continued...
Learn to appreciate and work with parents...
- In learning how to become a kindergarten teacher, remember parents are an invaluable resource.
- Many are enthusiastic and will help with everything from coordinating field trips to cooking with the children in the classroom.
- Remember to acknowledge their efforts with verbal and written recognition.
- Most young children love to have their parents help in the classroom.
4 tips for having parents help in the classroom...
- Send home a parent volunteer form early in the year.
- This form helps parents define which areas they may like to help with and also lets them know where you need help.
- Most forms include things like - help with the book fair, drive for field trips, come in and demonstrate a skill, fix broken furniture, help wash dress up clothes and toys, prepare / cut out items at home for the classroom.
- The form also includes a space for parents to say when they are available.
- Have a back up plan incase of last minute cancellations
- Be prepared to educate parents in the following areas:
- Other children's progress is confidential and should not be discussed outside the classroom
- Helping in the classroom is not a time for a parent/teacher interview about their child
- It is not the volunteer's job to "discipline" other peoples' children
- They may need a criminal record check to help in the classroom and/or a visitor's pass from the office
- A volunteer thank-you tea is always fun at the end of the year. Keep track of who helps you all year so no volunteer is forgotten.
Recognizing parents who need help
At times, it is obvious that certain parents need some help with child rearing skills. You may like to recommend the following:
"Dealing with the terrible twos and beyond, talking to toddlers" by Chris Thompson.
Don't be fooled by the title, the author's techniques work well with children from two to school age.
If any parents want to try it out, Chris offers 3 communication techniques on a free download. He is an expert at communication strategies, language patterns, influence and persuasion.