In our RCIC class we have a delightful little boy who has some attention issues. The teacher confided in me that she was becoming stressed by the demands of teaching all the students and managing this child’s behavior while trying to educated him at the same time. I decided it was time for a parent/teacher meeting. Here are some of the tips I learned while planning and implementing the meeting:
*Before the meeting, talk to the teacher (if that person is not yourself) and provide information and support to them. Ask them to be part of the parent/teacher meeting.
1/ Start out the meeting by reinforcing with the parents how glad you are that the child is in your program and if possible, mention some specific areas that he/she excels in. For example: “Johnny always asks such wonderful questions.” (You don’t have to mention at this time that he just blurts them out while some one else is talking.)
2/ Ask the parents how they think the lessons and classes are going. What does the child share at home about his/her time at Faith Formation?
3/ Gently, inquire whether the child has some attention (or other) issues, if the parents have not yet shared this information.
4/ Brainstorm with the parents about what changes could be made to increase the child’s positive experience (and the teacher’s too).
These are some of the things we came up with to deal with the student in our class:
*We asked an aide with experience in the field of special needs to assist in that class.
* The parents volunteered an older sibling who started attending classes with the young man, sat with him and helped him stay focused.
* Parent’s shared that the child’s ADHD meds were given earlier on that day and were wearing off by class time. They offered to give him a caffinated soda prior to class to help him focus. (This only works with some ADHD kids, please don’t try it with others or you will have the opposite effect!) Making the parents your partner in this process of problem solving is crucial to success.
Since our meeting this child has done really well and he and the teacher are happy. Hope these tips can help. Good luck and God bless.
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