Building strong links with home is a handy way of ensuring the student takes their work seriously. With Parent Evenings only happening once a year, it can be difficult to find the opportunity to strengthen this home-school link...
My Year 7s had been studying Charles Dickens' opening chapters and analysing his use of language to create atmosphere and character. Students drafted an essay and responded to teacher feedback using green pen. We'd then moved on to looking at creative writing skills – linked to the Dickens work we'd been doing. Students had drafted a descriptive piece, peer assessed one another's work and responded to peer feedback using green pen. We were five weeks into term, I had marked their books a few times and it felt like an appropriate moment to let parents / carers know what was going on in the lessons. The students knew that we were gearing up for an assessed piece of creative writing the following week so I wanted them to take some time to reflect on their areas for development. I set them this homework:
Talk to a parent / carer about the work we've been doing. Ask them to comment and sign here...
And this is a sample of the brilliant responses I got:
This parent response was quite brief but has clear evidence that the student discussed the work in some detail.
This parent took the opportunity to praise her child as well as flag up a concern with spellings, which encouraged me to hone my personalisation a little more.
This parent took the opportunity to write lots of detailed feedback and mentions how enjoyable the exercise was from the parent point of view, strengthening the link with home.