I used to dread them.
I used to think they could change student behavior.
I used to think I could see student behaviors reflected in parents.
I used to think they were so important.
Nowadays, after enduring at least 15 report card pick-up days, the only thing I can say for sure is this: Make sure you have plenty of hand sanitizer on hand. Shaking all those hands can sure get you sick.
Today went smoothly. Parents are mostly concerned. Mostly overwhelmed. Raising a teenager is difficult, I suppose.
I have a formula to getting my point across to parents.
- I say something nice about the kid. They smile.
- I tell them I'm sure the kid can succeed in my class, with just a little effort. They're eating it up.
- Then, I whack them with the truth. They believe every word. And the kid just shakes his head, thinking, "I'll get you for this!"
I figure everyone could use a little positive reinforcement.