Parent-Teacher Conference Prep: 6 Questions to Ask at Your Next Meeting

Feb 9, 2021 | Fort Collins

Parent-Teacher Conference Prep: 6 Questions to Ask at Your Next Meeting

Parent-teacher conferences are important because they provide you with valuable insight into your child’s academic performance and gives teachers the chance to learn more from you about your child’s personality and learning style. Since this is likely the first parent-teacher conference of the semester, this will be a great time to get an overview of your child’s progress so far.

To help maximize the parent-teacher conference to the fullest, here are six suggested questions to have ready to ask for your upcoming conference.


(1) Is my child meeting the state’s requirements for math proficiency? 

Being aware of the math requirements established by your state for your child’s grade level and school district allows you to make sure that your child is learning the math skills necessary to succeed as they move up to each grade.  It's also an opportunity to intervene early if there are any academic or personal issues that are beginning to surface. Make sure that your teacher is giving you an unbiased opinion of your child’s performance as compared to the standards, instead of comparing them to other students in the classroom.


(2) Will my child be taught all of the curriculum for this year as defined by

 the standard or a subset?

As a follow-up, now that you know if your child is meeting the state math requirements, you can receive feedback about what the learning expectations will be for your child and the guidelines used to set those expectations. Due to COVID-19 there may be some adjustments to the curriculum, so this is an opportunity to ask about any changes and the impact it may have on your child.


(3) In what ways has my child grown this school year? Does the growth match what would be expected in a pre-COVID year?  

To track your child's growth, you can ask the teacher about any improvements in test scores, homework averages and class participation, to name a few. With tangible examples of growth, you can compare them with the prior year to ensure your child is still making strides in the face of Covid-19 changes. You want to ensure that your child is learning everything that they’re expected to learn in this grade before moving on.


(4) Does my child show a lack of understanding of a certain concept? In what area does my child demonstrate the greatest strength?

This question allows you to receive feedback about your child’s weaknesses and their accomplishments so far this school year. If you know the areas in which your child is experiencing difficulty, you can give extra attention to these topics when reviewing homework and help reinforce the concepts with them. Being aware of their strengths allows you to encourage what they are good at and provide positive encouragement when they are facing challenges on other concepts.


(5) What is the best way to supplement what my child is learning in class?

Teachers can provide expert recommendations on how to better support your child outside of the classroom.  If there are any concerns about your student’s academic performance, they can provide resources and solutions. For the parent, this question is an opportunity to share about your child and your family’s experiences and interest to support learning at home. This allows you to give additional insight to the teacher. You know your child better than anyone, so it is important to provide valuable pointers about your child as a learner. For example, maybe some hands-on activities would be a beneficial way to keep your child engaged.


(6) Do you have any concerns about my child’s social-emotional well-being or behavior while receiving instruction?

Since your child’s teacher is observing them on an almost daily basis, they have a valuable perspective on how your child responds in a different setting. The teacher can inform you if your child is demonstrating any behavioral issues during instruction and share their observations with you. You can also share about your child to better inform the teacher, such as their likes and dislikes and how they interact with others, handle stress and cope with new experiences.  The more the teacher knows about your child, the better they can tailor their teaching style to fit your child’s needs.


A parent-teacher conference can be more than your child’s teacher simply listing off your child’s grades. The meeting should be an open conversation. Teachers will most certainly be appreciative of a parent who treats the meeting as more than an obligation and you as the parent will gain a true overview of your child’s academic environment. You have a partner in your child’s teacher to help work toward the goal of your child succeeding. 

If you need guidance on how to help your child succeed and you want to provide them with an additional outlet to continue to advance, our Mathnasium center is here for you. We specialize in providing individualized math instruction to children in grades 2 through 12, in-person and online. Give us a call or send us an email today for more information.