Parental Involvement in Show and Tell
Basis for Achievement
Show and tell can be very important in the life of a child. For most children this is a very enjoyable experience, however, for some, it can be intimidating when the student is unsure of what to bring to school. Competition can even arise. This is where parental involvement and good parent-teacher communication comes in.
There is much research to suggest that parental involvement has a direct correlation with student academic achievement. Use these simple guidelines to get parents involved in a small activity of show and tell in the Kindergarten classroom.
How Can Parents Get Involved?
When sending home a show and tell schedule, include ideas for the parents. Many parents are willing to become involved in the classroom and show and tell. If you are planning a show and tell around a theme, then let the parents know ahead of time. In the example of teaching about snow, send home some ideas that the students could bring into the classroom related to snow.
It could be as simple as a packet of hot chocolate, a book about snow, a favorite snow toy, gloves or mittens, a ruler that they used to measure the amount of snow, anything is possible! Parents will enjoy that the show and tell is related to the whole family as well. I once had a student bring in a spatula. The spatula was used to make cookies with his mom. His mom then came into the class with a plate of baked cookies for the class. Simple, yet profound, as there is a story waiting to happen.
Ask parents to write a story for the class about a life experience with their child, including pictures. For examples, have the parent and child write together about something that happened or somewhere they went to include in show and tell. Some teachers do this by sending home a classroom mascot, pet or backpack for students to experience, write and illustrate, but the same can be accomplished with any life experience.
Write A Letter
Write a letter to inform parents what your expectations are regarding show and tell:
First, show and tell has to be a safe time for students. Parents are given a schedule of show and tell to monitor when and what the students bring into the classroom. Firearms or contraband, or even the look of them, are prohibited.
Show and tell should not be the most expensive toy that the student has. The reason is two-fold. The child could lose it and it could make a lesser fortunate student feel uncomfortable.
The same is true for family cherished or breakable objects. This kind of object should not be brought into the classroom, unless the parent brings it in specifically for show and tell and takes the object back home him or herself.
Read the entire show and tell series for more ideas and tips.