Unshakeable Book Study- Ch. 5

 I am thoroughly enjoying Unshakeable by Angela Watson. Chapter 5 which is all about ways to relate to your students' families without eating up too much of your time or money.
Having good relationships with my students' families is one of my favorite parts of teaching. Last year I went to the high school graduation party for one of my former kindergarten/first graders. His family and I have kept in touch all this time. About 2 weeks ago their son left for the Navy to become a rescue swimmer. He's an absolutely awesome kid! There are other families I've gotten to know well but it still seems that I could be more in touch with more families. Enter Angela Watson and chapter 5 of Unshakeable.
(Ha! Ha! It just occurred to me to say "Angela's main ideas are..." I guess that work on non-fiction this year stuck with me. Hopefully it stuck with my students too!)
Angela highlights 10 ways to improve interaction with parents:
  1. Get parents on your side from Day 1
  2. Know and celebrate your community
  3. Hold monthly or quarterly Family Festivities
  4. Share good news from school
  5. Establish ongoing two-way communication
  6. Be pro-active with demanding parents
  7. Be pro-active with uninvolved parents
  8. Adopt an attitude of grace toward students' families
  9. Accept the fact that some parents will never, ever like you
  10. Never give up and always keep pushing to make parents your allies
Next year I'm going to work harder to get parents involved with our classroom. Angela as an idea for calling parents at the beginning of the year (I know I won't get that done day 1, but by the end of week 1 it seems do-able for me.) and for on-going communication. She has some freebies to help with this on her TPT store.
Do you have special events in your room or school for parents to come to? It seems like we all do. Every year my class Christmas party is making and decorating gingerbread houses. I invite parents and they make them with their children. It's great! Parents meet each other and the children their kids talk about and we all have fun. But after reading Angela's book I'm very encouraged to try having more events like this. Some years my school has a math night or reading night, etc. Now I'm thinking that I could do the same kind of thing only during the day. Angela suggest doing some before school, but I'm really not a morning person. Instead, maybe parents could come during the day. Say for 45 minutes before lunch for a math event. Or the same before recess for a reading or writing event. Surely my student's parents would really enjoy hearing them read their writing during our writing publishing parties?
I'll be back tomorrow with chapter 6! Learning to say no without the guilt. Oh boy do I need help with that!!!

Thanks for following our book study. Be sure to check out Cassie's blog for the previous 2 chapters. 
Adventures in Teaching


  1. On October 31st we do a "fall-out day" & parents help with cute Center activities. I'm thinking of adding one now in the spring as well.

  2. I love the idea of decorating gingerbread houses with their parents! I need to do much more of that.
    Phoning parents at the beginning of the year would also be very worthwhile.


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