As educators, we understand the shifts we are making in our own practices. It’s important to think about how these changes are being communicated to families. What is essential to share? It seems best to keep it simple. Better yet, our challenge is to show not tell as we involve families in the literacy learning happenings within our schools on an ongoing basis.
Here’s a group of educators that didn’t need to tell families about the importance of reading and writing more complex texts across the disciplines because they are showing it:
- Meet third-grade teacher, Bev Gallagher. She made notebooking a regular part of her instructional practices. These notebooks will become a treasured part of each child’s school career long after third grade.
- Julie Wollman, a ReadWriteThink.org and NCTE author, shows us how to get started with family message journals as a means for students to write to an authentic audience about their learning.
- Because the ways we teach writing are often quite different from the ways most of our students’ parents learned to write, it is important to think about productive ways to get families involved as strong allies for excellent writing instruction. The authors of “Inviting Parents In: Expanding Our Community Base to Support Writing” describe workshops and other methods for getting parents productively involved in their children’s literacy development.
- Watch as a parent who is in a Community of Practice with teachers shares what it means to learn, talk, and design activities as a full CoP member with teachers.
Join us over at ReadWriteThink.org on the Parent & Afterschool Resources site for engaging ways to introduce children to reading or to encourage teens to write. Need some age-appropriate book suggestions or rainy day activities? These materials are your answer—all of them created by experts to be fun, educational, and easy to use outside of school.
What role do parents and families play in your school?