Daily Parent Communication Journal

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by LATechTeacher, Jan 4, 2009.

  1. LATechTeacher

    LATechTeacher Companion

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    Jan 4, 2009

    I have a parent that would like to communicate with me daily about things that are going on in the classroom. I was wondering if anyone had a template the I could use to do this. Im not sure if I want to do a journal type format or use a calendar and just jot down notes. I need room on the page for both my comments and hers. If anyone has any ideas, let me know! Thanks!:)
     
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  3. RainStorm

    RainStorm Aficionado

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    How noble of that parent...to want YOU to do all that work! I'm all for teacher/parent communication, but this is asking a lot. I'd have to say "No thanks" to this wonderful helpful suggestion. I can't imagine having time to read and respond to 20-25 daily communication journals...in third grade. And I bet this parent will always have some question or concern...daily...and then will use what you write as fuel for more questions and concerns.

    Sorry. I'd pass.
     
  4. bballlady

    bballlady Rookie

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    Why is this parent requesting this daily journal? Unless this is mandated for a child's IEP I would not be doing it. I would have her look at the curriculum guides if she wants to know what was, is, and will be taught. Did her child's previous teacher/teachers do this?
     
  5. Arky

    Arky Comrade

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    Jan 4, 2009

    I had a parent ask for daily comunication also one time. I dreaded it at first but it actually ended up being a good thing for all. We used a regular spiral notebook and just jotted down things underneath each other's writing until we filled the page and then moved to a new one. It worked great.
     
  6. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

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    Jan 4, 2009

    I'd prefer to do via email than a hand-written journal, which would probably not end up at in the parents' hands most of the time any ways.

    My suggestion is this (and this is something we do with one of our students):
    ~ Send him or her home with a homework sheet that you double check over to make sure they understand that they need to do.
    ~ Leave a space after each day to write a comment or two if there was an issue or if they did something really well.
    ~ The parent should initial it every night to make sure they're seeing it.
    ~ BIG problems will have you personally contacting the parent either email or phone call (a call is preferred in these types of situations).
    ~If they're missing something the next day, circle it in red pen and tell them they have to have their parents sign next to it to see that they did not do their HW. They should stay in that day from recess to do it.

    I don't think a parent would really need anything more than this. If there's a problem, reassure them you'll contact them right away. However, as long as the student is doing his or her work in the class and is completing their homework, there is NO reason to be spending your prep time journaling for a parent who might read it for 2 seconds and be done with it. If she complains, let her know that you simply do not have the time to write out the whole day~ a brief summary of what's need from home is provided, a comment or two should appease them on how their child did that day.
     
  7. snickydog

    snickydog Groupie

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    Jan 4, 2009

    Daily?!? I mean, I'll write a spontaneous note back to a parent, or a quick note in the child's planner if I need to communicate something, but daily?! I do send weekly folders with a form that communicates:
    Date (Friday's date)
    Behavior (excellent, satisfactory, needs improvement or unsatisfactory - based on the number of card changes that week)
    Academics (check, check plus, check minus)
    Homework (on time/complete - check, check plus, check minus)
    Notes (just a quick thing, like "_____ did really well on his Chapter 3 math test," or "_____ is struggling to read sight words. Please practice her sight words from her word ring")
    Parent signature

    I change them each quarter and file them in the child's records.
     
  8. mom2ohc

    mom2ohc Habitué

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    Jan 4, 2009

    I think it is reall noble to have that much communication. However, i agree that it is hard to do.

    If I had to though, I would probably just do a spiral notebook with enough room to give a quick comment, and call it a day.

    I would also make it the student's responsibility to bring you the notebook at the end of the day for you to write in it. If I had the notebook on my desk, I am sure it would get lost or forgotten. I would put the onus on the student.

    GL! I bet the parent will love hearing good news from you each day! I know as a parent I would love it, my daughter's teacher is a little lacking in the communication department.
     
  9. futureteach21

    futureteach21 Habitué

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    Jan 4, 2009

    Two years ago, we did a communication journal for one of the Kindergarten kiddos in my enrichment class. We just had a plain notebook and every day it went between his real K class, us, and the parents. It ended up being a wonderful thing for the child and really helped his behavior problems go away. It was time consuming but I think it was worth it for the kid. But on the other hand, we only had 15 kids so with a larger class it may not work.
     
  10. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    My son's teacher has a classroom behavior plan. He makes up a calendar each month and puts the 4 levels inside each box.

    *If School Name Hero" is circled then the child had a good day.
    *If only one warning is given and it isn't serious, the teacher just circles it.
    *If it is anything more than that, the teacher circles it and jots a quick note about why.
    *If it is serious, I get an email.

    He told parents that if nothing is circled that means the child didn't circle it and the child had a good day. He tells them all to circle their appropriate level. He only checks the ones that do not have "School Name Hero" on it. He checks to make sure it is accurate and to jot down any needed notes. That way he doesn't have to fill out each and every one.
     
  11. LATechTeacher

    LATechTeacher Companion

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    I am just going to do it for this one parent. For some reason, the daily behavior chart and homework chart is not enough. Without giving too many details, she feels that there is not enough communication between us. So....I am going to do this journal thing. I think I am going to do the spiral notebook, and just jot down some things. I do think I am going to let the student be in charge of bringing it to me at the end of the day to make sure I don't forget it. It is going to be a pain, but it is much better than some alternatives (i.e. coming to my room every day!!).
     
  12. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Just my opinion and I'm not there, but she needs to learn to let go some. She hasn't figured that out. Unless her kid is having a lot of problems, she needs to learn that most teachers do not do this and it is not only not expected but it isn't healthy. Sometimes it takes longer for some parents to realize this.

    Edit: I'm sorry we are hijacking this thread with this kind of advice. I realize that's not what you were asking for. Unfortunately I don't have a template for you. I wish you luck though! :)
     
  13. bballlady

    bballlady Rookie

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    Jan 5, 2009

    What will you do if other parents get wind of what you are doing? What will be your rationale for doing it for one and not all?
     
  14. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I'm not sure there's any such thing as "just this once."

    It's like kids on bikes-- there's NEVER just one!!
     
  15. 3Sons

    3Sons Connoisseur

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    Jan 5, 2009

    What if it were email? Would responding to 20-odd emails a day (particularly if there's a lot of common info) be too much?

    :confused:

    Not healthy for who?
     
  16. cristib

    cristib Rookie

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    Red Folders

    I do a daily communication folder for 21 students. On a typical day, it takes me less than 5 minutes to do them, while they are getting the room cleaned up.

    Each student brings 4 red folders (one per quarter), pronged with pockets. The front pocket is labeled "please return", the back pocket is labeled with "keep at home". I put plain notebook paper in the prongs, and their Book-it calendar in the back.

    Each day I write the date, and indicate how the child's day was. Most days, most students have a smiley face with my initials. It's not much work. Parents can write notes to me in the folder too. It is also where they send lunch money, permission slips, and book orders.

    As the students arrive, they place the folders in a tray. I put them in number order (takes about 2 minutes) and take a quick peek in each one for notes from parents. The parents also initial the folder, acknowledging they checked it.

    It has been a great system, and the parents love the folders.
     
  17. Hoot Owl

    Hoot Owl Aficionado

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    No way, I respond to all parent emails and individual notes, but to commit to a daily journal...
     
  18. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

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    Also, I'd suggest you keep copies of what you communicate with your parents. If a parent complains or something, you'll have a record of what you said :)
     
  19. MrsHoot

    MrsHoot Comrade

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    Jan 6, 2009

    In my student teaching we used CUB folders (that was their mascot) and ours were basically the same as cristib. She has a plastic folder with prongs, front pocket was return to school, back keep at home. Then she had loose leaf paper in there and parents could write her if they had any questions or comments. It worked pretty well because not everyone wrote in them and they were quick to check. She usually checked them during calendar time- when they developed enough independence or recess. It's great for parents and the more clingier ones really liked having that outlet.

    However, it does seem a little redundant for you to have to write down something everyday- you would think a couple times a week whenever she has a question or comment would suffice =)
     
  20. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Jan 6, 2009

    We have a daily report sheet which some children use. It merely lists the date and then Period 1, 2, etc. I write down the subject for each period, and a sentence or two about what we did that period. I note if the child had a problem or anything significant happened. I also note an upcoming test date in that subject.

    Right now I only do this for one student. Starting tomorrow, another one will also get it. The parent signs it and the child brings it back. The parent can also attach a note or write a question on the form.
     

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