parent volunteers

Discussion in 'Second Grade' started by Gwen, Oct 26, 2008.

  1. Gwen

    Gwen Companion

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    Oct 26, 2008

    I have a parent volunteer coming in on Tuesday and Thursday. I was thinking of doing centers at the time she came in. What good center activities do you do that a parent can run?
     
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  3. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Oct 26, 2008

    Do you do literacy centers? The volunteer could sit with a group...
     
  4. Gwen

    Gwen Companion

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    Oct 26, 2008

    I do literacy centers but I guess I'm worried about the parents ability to manage the kids. Maybe I'm not giving her enough credit. :)
     
  5. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Oct 27, 2008

    If she wants to come in she probably isn't intimidated by the kids. I have parents come in for several reasons during the week-month-year...Computer lab help, spelling workshop help, family reading partners, class celebrations, field trips...Never have had a problem with parent's managing behaviors because I'm always right there and the expectaions about what the kids' work is and their behavior is made clear to them.
     
  6. teacherpippi

    teacherpippi Habitué

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    Oct 27, 2008

    Reading with kids or having kids read to her.

    Could she be a 'listening center'?

    What about doing a making words activity with the kids?

    Supervising a cut and glue art project?
     
  7. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    Oct 27, 2008

    hope this isn't off the wall, but do you guys really like the parents coming into your classroom??? I, for one, discourage all types of volunteer work in our classroom, especially during parties.
     
  8. Gwen

    Gwen Companion

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    Oct 28, 2008

    Sandra, To be honest I find parent to be a distraction to the learning environment. I use to teach kindergarten and found it more appropriate for parent volunteers but I've changed schools and grades. The parents that I have this year have a notorious reputation for dictating who their child gets as a teacher, what it taught in the classroom, how it's taught etc. So I'm not terribly excited about them coming in but I'm hoping that if they come in a few times they will loose interest and not want to volunteer so much. Right now I have them coming in on Tues/Thurs. mornings for an hour. The other day I had a complaint from a parent who felt that I should have 2 hour blocks everyday of the week. I can't go that far so I'm hoping that the 1 hour 2 days a week is a compromise.
     
  9. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    Gwen, I totally agree! I could never have parents in my classroom.
     
  10. MissHunny

    MissHunny Comrade

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    Oct 28, 2008

    i have a parent volunteer come in every tuesday during my daily five reading block. The volunteer works in the hallways with each reading group, udring thioer word work rotation time. She does magnet letter word work lessons (about 3 lessons in 20 minutes) with each group. They just sit on the floor in a semi circle around her in the chair.The lessons come from the books called Systematic Sequeuntial Phonics by pat cunnings (or cunningham?) I think.
     
  11. tgim

    tgim Habitué

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    Nov 2, 2008

    The key to utilizing parent volunteers effectively is two part: a) knowing where they are comfortable - working with students or doing bulletin boards or clerical work; and, b) prior planning - have out what they will need in an accessible place, have a list of jobs or activities they can help with, and give specific instructions so they are comfortable helping.

    I have anywhere from 7-11 parent volunteers each year. They usually come one or two times per month. I have rarely had a problem with distracting parents - simply because I am ready for them when they arrive. One time a parent did interrupt her child during instruction. The next time there was a break in the action, I asked this parent to remove the items she was working on and relocated her to another room across the hall. In future visits, I had all materials she needed in that room. Not surprisingly, after that she would work for about half an hour and then come to say she had to leave. Hey - at least my class wasn't being disrupted.

    Here's another secret that can work in your favor: ask the teachers from the grade level below you to look at your list of potential parent volunteers. They can offer a lot of insight about any problems they had with particular parents. I already know of one parent in this current class who will NEVER be "selected" to accompany us on a field trip - thanks to the teachers from last year!

    I have parents change my job chart, file papers, check off student homework, file signed/returned test packets, work with struggling readers one-on-one, work on math concepts such as counting money or basic +/- flashcards with struggling students, read with a leveled reader group, change hallway/seasonal displays, create learning games/activities, go over work-to-be-corrected with students, listen to a struggling reader read aloud an AR test, check students off on vocabulary word lists, tape library pockets into new classroom library books, type up AR Top Five of the Week lists, etc.

    My school is very fortunate to have outstanding support from parents/community members. I would be saddened to disallow parents from participating in my classroom - they love getting to see everything that goes on in our room, and they truly have a better understanding of just how much gets accomplished just by being in the room - which is as much to my benefit as it is to theirs. :blush:
     

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