We held our first of four Parent Workshops yesterday. These workshops are held school-wide and we call them PTPs (Parent-Teacher-Partnership). The purpose of them is to empower the families of our students through classroom knowledge. Teachers know that parents can be a huge support pillar in the educational journey of their child. So we try to bring them in every chance we get!
Many of you asked for some details on how our workshops are organized, so I'll give you a quick rundown:
We schedule our PTP workshops according to the cognitive development of our students. Hence, the schedule follows the pacing of our lessons. If you teach kindergarten, you know that the beginning of the school year is taken over by letter names, rhyming, word play, introduction of letter sounds, and implementation of sight words monitoring procedures, etc. This is why our PTP Workshop #1 covers the alphabetic principle and sight words. PTP #2 is scheduled for November and it will cover the math key standard: Counting & Cardinality. The reason we cover this topic during that time of year is because we begin those "number sense" math lessons in early October (beginning with numbers 1-5 and then 6-10). By November we have moved far enough along, that we start to see the gaps that usually come with learning the teen numbers (parents begin to see those gaps as well). This is also around the time that we begin our RTi leveled groupings. PTP #3 is on writing and this is scheduled for Jan. As you know, writing is the academic area that takes longer to develop, so we hold off on it a bit. But we also don't wait until it's too late. PTP #4 is scheduled for the end of the school year because that is when the kindergarten families have an opportunity to meet the first grade team and learn about the standards and expectations that await them the following year.
We begin by inviting our families to the workshop about 2 weeks in advance with the flyer you see above. Interested families must respond by returning the tear-off in order to be guaranteed a "goodie packet." We ask parents to sign-up in advance because we need to know how many packets to prepare ahead of time.
We feel good about the feedback that our families give us every year. Parents are appreciative of the time and effort we take to make this a worthwhile event. Do all families attend (especially the ones that need the information the most)? No. But we don't feel that is a reason to deprive the many that do get a lot out of the experience. We've been doing these workshops for over 10 years, by the way! Some of our families do not speak English and we realize that for these parents, this workshop will serve as schooling for them, as well. We welcome and embrace this dual learning experience. Hope you find this information on our parent PTP workshops helpful.
Here We Come to Save the Day!
We are three energetic kindergarten teachers who want to share our kinder experience with you!