Tonight was Open House Night at our school. I had 17 out of 21 families attend. Great!
Really? I don’t think so.
Every year I look forward to meeting the families of the children I teach. It is such a great way to connect home to school to meet face to face. I get to see my students in an entirely different light-as a parent’s pride and joy. My heart is filled with joy when I see the way parents look at their children when I tell them that their son/daughter is a fantastic kid and that I am thrilled that their son/daughter is in my class and can’t wait to help them with their learning. It is watching love.
But tonight I didn’t see four families. I can’t help but feel failure. This year, like every year, I phoned each family and invited them to come, gave times and dates etc. I left several different notes in the planners in the days leading up to the event. And every year I have a couple of families who don’t attend. The worst part is that this year these families are ones I have never met. I understand that people are busy, after school events, work-everything gets in the way…but how could you not meet the person (in my case people, my teaching partner and I) who are spending 35+ hours a week with their child? It breaks my heart.
So I am sitting here tonight wracking my brain for ideas of how to get those four families into our school. I will send home the web address of our class website (if they have internet) and hope that they are able to navigate/access the site. I will make a phone call home to tell them something that their son/daughter has done well this week, write a note in the planner…continue with what I do anyway. But I need some new ideas. There has to be a way to connect with these families and show them that we want them to be a part of our school and community. Maybe I will have the class put on some kind of performance…I don’t know. Any ideas?