Aug 26, 2013

Posted by | 4 Comments

3 Ways to Make Your Room a Must-Stop on Parent Night

Parent Night is probably right around the corner for many of you as we get ready to launch into a brand new school year. If you are anything like me (and I suspect a lot of you are)  you know Parent Night can be kind of a drag. Parents and students find their new teachers and classrooms, but tend to skip right by the art room. Don’t you want them to see everything that will be happening in your room too? I know I did. That’s why I made the art room a must-stop on parent night by using these 3 tips.

Parent-Night

 

1. Advertise!
Put up some signs around the school inviting parents to you room. Put up a big one right outside your door welcoming families in. Ask teachers to direct families to your room before they leave for the night.

2. Make Art!
Set up a creative activity that parents and students can work on together. I put up my Friendly Loom and put out markers and crayons to complete a collaborative mural based on our school theme for the year. I was able to talk with parents about the kinds of skills I taught and show them first-hand the sorts of lessons we do. I had two rules: 1. Students had to have a parent with them to participate (no one could be running around without supervision) and 2. Everything had to be left as it was found. By holding parents and students to these rules, we were all on the same page about the way I conduct our classroom.

friendly loom

3. Talk, talk, talk!
Sometimes Parent Night is the only chance you’ll have to meet a parent face-to-face. Don’t let this incredible opportunity pass you by! Find out about your students’ families. Ask if anyone has any artists in the family. Have a sign-up ready for parent volunteers. Really push your parent networking skills.

By inviting parents and students for an opportunity to make a little art and experience the art classroom, you can go a long way to establishing positive relationships.You never know when you might need them!

How do you get parents involved in your classroom? 

What does Parent Night look like at your school? 

Sarah-DThis article was written by AOE Team member Sarah Dougherty.  Sarah is the Visual Arts Curriculum Coordinator and Arts Integration Specialist for the largest school district in Iowa, prior to which she served as an elementary and HS art teacher for 7 years.

About Sarah | Sarah’s Articles

Print Friendly

  • Donna W

    This article came at a perfect time as our fine arts team was told we couldn’t present at curriculum night this week because the parents would be in the classrooms for the presentations and there wouldn’t be enough time for us to properly share out what we do. Cannot tell you how disappointed and how long our three faces were. It’s also perfect that I am being evaluated this year and one of my goals is Increasing Parent Communication. Hmm, thinking we might be attending next year’s curriculum night, to meet my goal of course! Thank you for the great ideas, I will be sure to give you credit!

    • http://www.theartofed.com/ Sarah

      That would make me long in the face too! I love that you found a creative and positive way to start solving the issue: your evaluation goal! I’d love to hear how it works out for you!

  • Naj

    I held an event in my art room for open house tonight, for the first time ever at our school. There are a few things I would have done differently but overall it was fantastic. Thank you for the tips. The parents and students enjoyed themselves and the parent left informed. I think my admin was pleased as well. When they walked in their eyes lit up, so I know they liked it. I’ll be doing this every year.

    • http://www.theartofed.com/ Sarah

      Naj, that makes me smile! It has to feel good to start the year with a success like that!