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  #1  
Old 06-16-2005, 11:17 AM
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luvmykids luvmykids is offline
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Virginia
Letter home to introduce yourself

Does anyone have any samples they would care to share of a letter you send home in the beginning of the year to introduce yourself to your students. I am new to the school and thought it would be a good idea to send a letter telling a little about myself and what I expect of the year to come so my students and parents can "meet" me.

 
  #2  
Old 06-18-2005, 05:33 AM
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gigi gigi is offline
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NH/USA
currently tutoring
I always send a letter home to both students and parents, along with a small project for students to bring in the first day of school for an ice breaker. I tell a bit about myself, family, pets, personal interests. Then a bit about what we will be doing in the classroom. I usually have a picture of myself on the student letter so they will know what I look like. Then I explain about the project to bring into school.
  #3  
Old 06-18-2005, 08:27 AM
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CanadianTeacher CanadianTeacher is offline
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Ontario, Canada
Middle School Teacher
Here's mine:


Dear Parents/Guardians:

I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you and your child to a new year at (school). I am looking forward to getting to know you and your child throughout the coming year, which surely promises to bring with it, many new experiences and challenges. In order to make the year a successful one, teamwork and cooperation will be required by all. As your son or daughter’s teacher, it is my goal to help him/her become a confident learner and I will do my best to help make this year a positive experience for your child.

I have included an outline of the routines and expectations for this year. Please read through the information with your child and keep it for future reference.

I look forward to working in partnership with you throughout the coming year and I am confident that together we can provide the support and encouragement needed to help your child excel. If you have any questions now or at anytime in the future, don’t hesitate to contact me at the school at (phone number).

Sincerely,
  #4  
Old 07-07-2005, 10:04 PM
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vizavis vizavis is offline
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Texas
Big Smile

The relationship that teachers establish with parents is important. During the first few days of the new school year, teachers need to begin establishing a good relationship with the parents of students. The relationship benefits the student in many areas and allows for serious concerns on the part of both teacher and parents to be addressed within a spirit of mutual cooperation.
During the first few days of school, I sent home a note to all of my student’s parents with a welcome for the new school year. I expressed a commitment to teaching and excitement at the opportunity of teaching their child. I also opened the door for any assistance I could provide toward the mutual goal of their child’s achievement. I included a brief explanation of my teaching philosophy and a copy of the classroom rules. The following is a copy of that letter:

Dear Parent/ Guardian,

I am so pleased to be teaching your child art this year. I have taken this opportunity to let you know a little about myself and to invite you to contact me if I may be of any assistance to you with regard to your child. Please feel free to contact me by phone at school. I will return your call at the earliest possible time.

I teach from the prospective that all of us all creative beings, though not necessarily creating in the same way. I have high expectations for each student but I recognize that all of us learn, create, and express ideas in a different ways. How sad it would be to live in a world where it was all the same. I encourage students to seek their own unique creative mode and to interpret ideas in ways that most appeal to their own creative nature. Initially, we will focus on some basic skills.

Please be assured that I do not expect students to paint like Rembrandt. It is far more important that they learn to appreciate art and the act of creating. We’re not all painters but we are all creative.

I do not anticipate problems which cannot be worked out in a spirit of cooperation. I have been careful to explain my expectations to the whole class. I have included a copy of the Classroom Rules for you to keep. Please read over the rules carefully and sign the attached receipt along with your child. This will verify that you and your child are aware of the rules of behavior and consequences. Please, I need to have the signed receipt for the next class day.

Your child is important to me. The contract is an important tool in establishing and maintaining an orderly and safe learning environment in the classroom. I look forward to meeting you at the open house next week.
Thank you,
(Signature)
(School phone number)
(Conference hours)


This letter sent a message of cooperation as well as establishing a means of handling any behavioral problems in the classroom. All parties share accountability toward each other and are involved in both the academic progress and behavior of the learner from the very start of the school year. There are no surprises when it comes to the method of procedure when handling behavior that is unacceptable in the classroom.

During the year, I recognized that the letter freed me to call parents with really important issues relating to their child. I was able to feel comfortable about keeping parents abreast of information both positive and otherwise where their child was concerned. In turn, they were able to assist me with the wisdom of their insight, often affecting how I approached the situation.

Although this was small Catholic school, I have no doubt that this is the way to bring about good response from parents. It establishes a “spirit of community” between teacher, students and parents.
Hope this helps. Best regards to you!
vizavis
  #5  
Old 07-07-2005, 10:09 PM
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vizavis vizavis is offline
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Texas
Er, uh...that should be 'perspective' not 'prospective'...now you can see why I am not an English teacher. (Red face)
vizavis
  #6  
Old 07-07-2005, 10:21 PM
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kinderkids kinderkids is offline
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Kindergarten Teacher
I have put together a kindergarten handbook that I use in my classroom. In it I include a little intro about myself, and then go into details about my goals and expectations for the school year. I include my philosophy, my discipline method, absences, tardies,specific rules I have for the classroom, etc. Of course there is a handbook for the entire school, but this one is geared strictly for my K class. It has been great having it as it answers many questions that I found have come up throughout my years of teaching. The parents are to sign and return the last page stating that they have read the handbook. When questions do arise about certain things, most of the time you can refer parents to the handbook. I have been very through in covering a majority of topics, questions, etc. This may be a nice thing to have to let parents know of your expectations and other important details.
  #7  
Old 07-07-2005, 11:05 PM
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Diandra Diandra is offline
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New England/USA
Smile

As a parent and assistant in the public schools I find it very helpful when a teacher takes the time to send out a letter about the upcoming school year and information about themselves. Two years ago when my son started school he was very anxious all summer about going. He has a spectrum disorder PDD and is going for testing this summer to determine if he has Asberger's Disease.

When his teacher sent a letter home to the parents and the students, she also included a small handmade book titled "Let's Get to Know Each Other". She took photos of all the people who would be working with them, such as the librarian, principal, vice-principal, art teacher and others. I thought it was a great idea and she said "the book really was not that difficult to do and took less time than she thought".

In her letter she included personal information about herself, what she expects from her students and what students as well as parents should expect from any educator. Confidentiality about her students, respect of personal and cultural views, that each student is unique and should be valued for their uniqueness. That she has a dedicated email address for her parents to send in comments or questions to. If it is something that cannot wait until the following school day to call her voice mail at the school and mark the call urgent.

She also included that she was a big Red Sox Fan, blue is her favorite color and that oranges are her favorite fruit. She also let the students know she has a grown son that lives in Washington D.C. and that her husband would from time to time be helping out as a volunteer in the classroom.

I cannot tell you how much this helped his anxiety and mine. He actually rode the bus to school the very first day, because the book and letter made him feel much more comfortable. I know teachers spent a great deal of time outside of school working on lesson plans, grading papers, parent teacher confrences, IEP meetings and the list could go on as you well know. If you can find the time to put together a small book with photos, a brief description of the teacher(s) who will be working with them, it benefits everyone involved.

Even if children attend a school for three years, there is usually someone they don't know who they will be working with for the first time this year. My son and I both have no idea what his new teacher looks like. We have seven or eight second grade classrooms in one school. It is even hard for me to remember who everyone is, let alone what they teach or do in a school with so many classrooms.

I wish you luck, and think that it is wonderful that you are taking the time to do this for both the parents and the students. They are lucky to have such a caring educator. Enjoy the summer!
  #8  
Old 07-08-2005, 08:06 AM
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luvmykids luvmykids is offline
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Virginia
Thank you for all of the suggestions!! I am getting anxious to get my class list and get started on the new year!!
  #9  
Old 07-08-2005, 10:21 AM
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Loneil115 Loneil115 is offline
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Saint Louis, Missouri Area
What kind of projects do you include in your letter? Just curious. Thanks.
 

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