The benefits of a solid parent-teacher relationship: Early Years thrive during online learning
Google classrooms, paper packs and live-streaming lessons: three methods of teaching that we’ve become accustomed to throughout Covid-19.
Yet, for these methods to be successful, one thing lies at their core – a solid parent-teacher relationship.
Online learning in Oriel Academy’s Early Years has thrived during the Coronavirus pandemic as teachers and parents have worked together to achieve maximum student engagement.
Regular telephone conversations and weekly overviews have ensured parents and carers are fully up-to-date on their child’s learning.
The transparency between teachers and parents has resulted in incredible student engagement throughout this period of remote learning. Furthermore, parents have shared messages of praise for the quality of teaching delivered, some of which are listed below:
“Bisma loves school and she is doing very well thanks to all the reception teachers.”
“Aran just wanted to thank his teachers for their kindness.”
“Jibreel will try his best to continue to make his teachers proud.”
“Thank you very much for your kind comments.”
Kristina Bikauskaite, Early Years Lead at Oriel Academy, explained: “Every Monday, we provide an overview for the week for each different subject. This lets parents know what their children will be up to each day and what is expected of them.
“Ofsted says ‘it’s useful to provide pupils with an overview of the bigger picture and where a specific lesson or activity sits within a sequence of lessons or activities’, so that is what we are aiming to do.
“On a typical day, we cover five different areas: maths, literacy, phonics, a thought of the day and our No Limits topic, which last term was ‘space’.
“We have established a routine now so all parents know what to expect each week and we are on the same page.”
Students are given two assignments to complete each day – one in maths and one in literacy – and homework is set on Friday’s.
“We value every piece of work submitted and celebrate it with the children. Every day, we mark and comment on their work and provide them with next steps.
“We call the parents of the children who are not using Google Classroom (but using paper packs instead) and regularly remind them to bring these to the school to be marked.”
Kristina revealed how thankful the Early Years team are for the support of parents whilst navigating online learning: “The parents have been really enthusiastic throughout online learning.
“They’ve really been engaging with what we’re asking the students to do. We even called them recently to say thank you for their support.”
Maintaining a solid parent-teacher relationship during lockdown has been crucial in maximising student engagement.
Additionally, to add a personal touch, staff have created videos of themselves sending well wishes to their students to encourage them to carry on working hard.
Kristina notes that the success of online learning in Early Years is a combined effort from all of the staff, for which she offers her thanks: “A huge and heartfelt thank you to all of our amazing Early Years teachers and teaching assistants. Your hard work, positivity and kindness are hugely celebrated!”