Thursday, 23 February 2017
Whanau Conferences (Term 1, 2017)
This afternoon we had whanau conferences. This event is designed for parents and teachers to meet, and share the next learning steps for students.
As this is the first year I am in my own class, it was my first time doing this event by myself... It went great! I had almost 80% of my students turn up with some kind of family member (parent, sibling, aunt, nana, etc).
Over the past week or so, we have been preparing student goal sheets to share with the parents.
My class also prepared bookmarks (e.g. Syraiah-Lee, Amon) which included QR codes linked to their learning blogs. I showed the whanau member how to access their childs blog using these codes, and they seemed to be excited about an easier way to view their blog.
I made a concious effort to keep the goals simple and achievement. Yes, there is some 'teachery talk' on the goal sheets, but after reading each sheet through with the student, I would summarise their goals in everyday words so whanau members could understand.
Most of my students had learning their times tables as a goal for maths, and using more specific vocabulary in writing, among other goals. The whanau members understood how the spelling homework I have set supports this writing goal, and could see evidence in the classroom of how we are working towards it together as well.
It was also lovely to receive a gift of flowers and home-grown tomatoes from one of my students parents.
This event was a great way to make connections with parents of my new students, and build on the existing relationships I have with my year 5's (who I had last year as year 4's).