Make sure you have a plan in place for how you will communicate with parents. Know the answer to all of these questions before you meet with any parents.
How can parents stay up-to-date on what is going on in the classroom? Will you have a newsletter, a blog, a website, a homework book, a student planner?
Will you send home graded papers on a daily basis, or in a Thursday or Sunday folder?
What is the best way for parents to contact you if they have a question or concern?
How can parents expect to hear from you about a child’s behavior, good or bad? Will you call them directly, send them an email, or send a note home in their backpack?
Think through how you want to handle homework throughout the year. Here are some questions to ask yourself. These are ALL questions that students and parents have asked at least once.
Will students have consistent homework each week? (For example: Do they have weekly reading log or fluency etc. that will come home every week for the entire school year?)
In addition to “standing” weekly homework, will you send home unfinished work with students to complete at home?
How do you grade homework? Completion? Accuracy? What is your justification behind the way you are grading?
What is your late policy, and what are the repercussions if homework is not turned in on time?
Where and when will students turn in homework?
Before students walk in the door, have a plan in place for how you will reinforce positive behavior and how you will redirect negative behaviors.
Are you going to have a clip chart system for individual behavior?
How will you reinforce positive behavior and what are the consequences for inappropriate behaviors?
Will you have some rules for pupils to follow throughout the year?
Make sure you decide ahead of time what notebooks, folders, or binders you will be using for which purposes. Make sure you know if you want all of your students to use the red folder for homework and the yellow folder for classwork, etc. This will help you in the long run, but if you don’t plan ahead, you won’t have as much opportunity to be as organized.
What other things you should prepare for before the school starts? Share your ideas.