5 Tips for Communicating with Preschool Teachers

My munchkins are getting into some mischief at school (talking, not paying attention, etc.).  Here’s what I picked up in communicating – and not communicating – with the preschool teachers.  

*  Teachers don’t want to be thought of as not being able to handle their classroom or their students. Even if your child is acting in a matter that you don’t feel is appropriate, the teacher may not tell you or tell you the extent to which your child is misbehaving in fear of appearing that she doesn’t have control of her class.  However, this becomes an issue later when/if the behavior escalates.

* Teachers make excuses too. I’ve made my own excuses – like he’s not being challenged (but he acts up in the hall and during nap time). Teachers have told me repeatedly that my son is ‘just being a boy.’ And I bought into it.  However, I wish I had nipped that in the bud the first time. Boys are active, but if it’s getting them into trouble, you should pay special attention.

* Your child may act differently at home than at school. There are more kids at school and different scenarios than what’s at home. Be open to the teacher describing a different behavior or reaction in your child.

* Ask specific questions of the teacher.  If your child received a sad face, a red flag, or an ‘N’, get the details. Ask, “How many times did you have to reprimand my child today?”  “Were any other children involved?” “What kind of disciplinary action was taken?”  This will speak volumes about any behavioral issues.

* The teacher doesn’t want to get your child into (too much)  trouble. Can you believe it? Even after the mayhem he/she caused. She may downplay the situation in fear that you will overreact (I’ve been accused of doing that 🙂 ). You’ve got to drill down (pass all of these emotions) to the issue at hand – your child’s behavior!

I’ve also learned that my kids – even the 3y.o. – know how to leave out details … no, no, no … I mean LIE about a situation. Already?!?! But, they tell me the truth later (I think 🙂 ).   

I really do think my sons’ teachers are great! We are all still getting to know each other – and I’m still learning this whole ‘school thing’ from a parents’ perspective. The teachers and administration are extremely helpful and team-oriented and I’m grateful for that! 

But it’s weird though …my kids get into a little trouble, and I end up learning the lessons. Go figure.

What’s been your experience?

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7 thoughts on “5 Tips for Communicating with Preschool Teachers

  1. Awesome post. I agree most teacher try to down play situation. I like your tip on asking specifics, like how often they had to ask you child to stop doing something and behave. Also if any other kids were involved. Knowing whether or not your child caused commotion or was just following after his friends. Thi is important so you know how to address situation

    • Thank you Daphne! I appreciate it and I didn’t want to come off as being negative. Someone in the profession shared most of these tips with me. The questions have helped me so much tho! And it can all be done amicably with the forethought of we are trying to help the child – but in the end – it is YOUR child 🙂 you know what I mean?

  2. The nice thing about preschoolers is that if you stay neutral you can pull the whole story out of them. Most the time they don’t understand that they’ve done something to get themselves in trouble with Mom. (especially boys). We focus more on what to do next time and role playing possible solutions than scolding. I’m less worried about the occasional infraction than the one who follows every rule perfectly every time. I was that girl! …and I was in high school before I felt confident enough to be myself….plus, when I did get in trouble it was very traumatizing because I hadn’t practiced dealing with it.
    shhhhhh! don’t tell the teacher 😉

    • Hello! Thanks for the comment! This is a different perspective (although these ‘infractions’ are not occasional) but I think I was that girl too! And now I’m thinking back and through some scenarios – hhmmm… thanks for sharing that. Dare I say, I don’t think my boys are in that category and I’m thankful? I just hadn’t looked at it like that. 🙂

  3. Great post. I recently had a situation where my child came home with a head wound from another student. Evidently, this( 3 year old bullies) had been going on for a while, but the teacher never told me about it because there was no obvious evidence. Even the MOTHER of the child didn’t know that the boy had behavior problems until she saw my son’s head and asked. SMH. Yeah. I had a looooong talk with everyone.

    • Hi LaShawn! Thanks for the comment – this is kinda what I’m talking about. I can relate to this situation very well … And then everyone is caught off guard which is really hard to deal with on both sides. Yep – I know how that is 🙂

  4. Definitely agree with the whole different behavior at home than at school thing. I have two that exhibit totally different behaviors at home that never creep up in class. I also have one that’s a chatterbox, and she’s now having to sit by the teacher, lol. Our teachers are great, and are quick to email us if there is an issue. Just yesterday, my 7 year old forgot his homework and had to bring home a note to be signed. He signed it himself, and his teacher called him out on it, and then emailed us to let us know. We were able to talk to him about it as soon as he got home, and I’m glad she was so quick to let me know!

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