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Parent Engagement . Parent Engagement. Today’s Session Self Assess The Engagement Model Secrets to Getting Parents Involved Using Your Tool Kit . Parent Engagement: Self Assess . Individual Exercise: What is your role as a after school program provider?

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parent engagement1
Parent Engagement

Today’s Session

  • Self Assess
  • The Engagement Model
  • Secrets to Getting Parents Involved
  • Using Your Tool Kit
parent engagement self assess
Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Individual Exercise:

  • What is your role as a after school program provider?
  • What do you like best/least about this role?
  • Why do you do it?
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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Group Exercise:

  • What is the definition of engagement?
  • Why is parent engagement important?
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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Engagement

One who is fully involved in, and enthusiastic about their role, and will act in a way that furthers their organization’s interests.

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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Engagement

Schools that succeed in engaging families from very diverse backgrounds share three best practices:

  • Focusing on building trusting collaborative relationships among teachers, families, and community members.
  • Recognizing, respecting, and addressing families needs and cultural differences.
  • Embracing a philosophy of partnership where power and responsibility are shared.
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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Group Exercise:

  • What are the characteristics and values of your parents?
  • What do we need/want your parents to do?
  • What activities are you currently doing to engage parents?
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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Best Practice #1: Do research and conduct assessment of parents/guardians of the difference between an engaged and disengaged target group.

Best Practice #2: Identify a list of tasks and activities you need the parents to be engaged in and share with them. Let them pick activities that are aligned with their values.

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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Group Exercise:

What are your current barriers and challenges to getting parents engaged?

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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Parent Challenges

Obstacle #1: Limited time and work commitments

Most parents work or have other commitments that interfere with family life. Studies show that in today’s busy world, individuals have very short periods of free time.

Best Practice #3: Use a variety of communication channels. Ask parents the best way to communicate. Provide options for involvement that may not be to time intensive.

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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Parent Challenges

Obstacle #2: Parents think it doesn’t matter

When parents are asked why they don’t get involved, the most common response is that they think it will not make a difference for their child.

Best Practice #4: When you select meaningful roles for parents and explain why you think it is important, they can see the connection and understand the impact their role will have.

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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Parent Challenges

Obstacle #3: Family stress

Parenting is stressful as the child grows. As the child develops, parents must learn to handle the new behaviors at each age. These normal stresses can be compounded by family, marital and financial difficulties.

Best Practice #5: Child care providers might not be aware of these problems that make it hard for family members to become involved. Pay attention to what parents say and what they don’t say and provide whatever support is needed to help them manage their stress load.

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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Parent Challenges

Obstacle #4: Parents don’t feel welcome

Many parents assume that once a child care provider is in charge, they don’t want the families involved.

Best Practice #6: Communicate how you can work as a team to best benefit their child. Find the communication channel that works best for them (face to face, e-mail, social media, hard copy, group meetings). Create a mission statement together.

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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Parent Challenges

Obstacle #5: Child care provider stress

Often times care givers discover it can be stressful and take extra time to involve parents in their child care program. Involving family members in your child care means that you must be willing to invest the time and effort. Don’t assume “they get it.”

Best Practice #7: Provide clear instructions and materials that can teach the parents how to do something. Do this in both English and other translated languages based on your population.

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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Individual Exercise Action Plan:

Based on your current challenges what can you use from the best practices shared to incorporate into your program.

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Parent Engagement

Today’s Session

  • Self Assess
  • The Engagement Model
  • Secrets to Getting Parents Involved
  • Using Your Tool Kit
parent engagement engagement model
Parent Engagement: Engagement Model

The Parent Engagement Model

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Parent Engagement: Engagement Model

Tips to help them become better teachers

  • Use a train-the-trainer model. Teach the parents on how to become teachers.

Team Exercise:

    • How can we do that?
  • Parent as Teachers
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Parent Engagement: Engagement Model

Providing resources and understanding rights

  • Help parents understand the No Child Left Behind legislation and how it impacts them.

Team Exercise:

    • How can we do that?
  • Providing Resources
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Parent Engagement: Engagement Model

Secrets for better decision making

  • Provide parents guidance on how they can make better choices to help with their child’s education.

Team Exercise:

    • How can we do that?
  • Effective Decision Making
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Parent Engagement: Engagement Model

Helping them become leaders

  • Connect with hard to reach parents by providing tools and resources.

Team Exercise:

    • How can we do that?
  • Becoming Leaders
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Parent Engagement

Today’s Session

  • Self Assess
  • The Engagement Model
  • Secrets to Getting Parents Involved
  • Using Your Tool Kit
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Parent Engagement

Secrets to getting parents involved

Secret #1: Get off to a good start

  • Get to know the child’s family – all of them. Try to involve as many individuals as possible. Start with an orientation meeting and invite all to participate. Take the time to learn about the cultures of these families.
    • If they can’t participate at after school functions/events get them engaged in other ways.
  • Studies show that people are the most confident about their children’s care when they feel that their care giver is interested in them as people.
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Parent Engagement

Secrets to getting parents involved

Secret #2: Create a Parent Space

  • We tell children that we value their play and art when we make spaces for these activities. We also tell parents how we value them by making space for them in our program. Most parents become involved when they feel welcomed and comfortable.
  • The ideal location includes: a place to sit down with other parents to talk, read bulletin boards and have rack for helpful handouts. Also a book basket for books to borrow.
    • Create a “Wall of Fame” to highlight parent volunteers.
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Parent Engagement

Secrets to getting parents involved

Secret #3: Help parents see the value

  • Give parents important work and help them see the value of this for their child. When you are asking for help explain why you think it will be good for the child.
  • Understand the parents’ culture, norms and value systems.
  • Often parents and other family members don’t realize how influential involvement can be to the development of the child.
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Parent Engagement

Secrets to getting parents involved

Secret #4: Use powerful communication

  • The best way to use written communication is through calendars, flyers, newsletters, and sign-up sheets.
  • Interview children and parents for your newsletter. Ask children to create invitations to send to their parents to participate in child care events.
  • Post-sign up sheets at the door where they can visibly see.
  • Know your audience: values, cultures, communication needs.
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Parent Engagement
  • Provide welcome kits to new families.
  • Challenge all staff to make one positive contact with a parent each week.
  • Use a variety of communication channels: Social media, newsletters, website, letters, and boards.
  • Have children write personal notes and create invites for school programs to give to their parents.
  • Have group/theme nights where parents can interact with other parents especially those that speak their same language but also speak English well.
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Parent Engagement

Secrets to getting parents involved

Secret #5: Make your program a caring community

  • Many people have lost the feeling that they belong to a community that cares. Child care may be one of the few places where they can develop supportive networks. Make sure you offer social events where family members can meet and talk.
    • Ask family members to help out by reading and tell stories or assisting with field trip.
    • Host a Thanksgiving dinner or movie night.
    • Host a “Take Your Family to After School Week” with special activities lined up throughout week.
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Parent Engagement
  • Invite a family member to be the “guest of honor” for day.
  • Have a career day where one of the parents show a demonstration on what they do: cooking, woodworking, etc. Where they can teach the children about a profession and how to learn something new.
  • Coordinate a drive: food donation, recycling, etc.
  • Organize “Community Scavenger Hunt” with local community groups, organizations, and churches the families may be involved with.
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Parent Engagement

Secrets to getting parents involved

Secret #6 Making Home a Learning Center

  • Post a “Question of the Week” that kids need to talk to their parents about to get the answer
  • Provide homework that requires them to talk to someone at home. Possible interview format.
  • Involve parents in goal setting for projects.
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Parent Engagement
  • Create a book club.
  • Establish a math or science competition.
  • Provide parents who don’t read or speak English with picture books. Have them explain pictures with their children in their language.
  • Create a lending library or family center with parenting materials.
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Parent Engagement

Secrets to getting parents involved

Secret #7: Say thank you from the heart

  • Make sure you and the children take the time to say thank you to parents and family members when they have done something for their development. A thank you note, newsletter article, or recognition board goes a long way to letting people know that you truly care and they are making a difference.
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Parent Engagement: Self Assess

Individual Exercise Action Plan:

Based on the Secrets just shared, create a goal list of things that you would like to create for your afterschool program.

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Parent Engagement

Today’s Session

  • Self Assess
  • The Engagement Model
  • Secrets to Getting Parents Involved
  • Using Your Tool Kit
parent engagement using your toolkit
Parent Engagement: Using Your Toolkit

Self-Assessment Profile

  • Identify what you are doing that has worked in the past.
  • Identify what you have done in the past that hasn’t worked.
  • Create list of positives: what resources and tools you have available.
  • Create list of negatives: budget constraints and limited resources.
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Parent Engagement

Create you Checklist

  • Create your needs/wants list
  • Develop goals
  • Clarify how you want parents involved
  • Provide options
  • Set expectations
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Parent Engagement: Using Your Toolkit

Parent questionnaire

  • Use Parent Survey
  • Use Discussion Questions
references
References
  • Parents for Public Schoolshttp://www.parents4publicschools.com
  • The Parent Teacher Association http://www.pta.org
  • U.S. Department of Education Parental Information and Resource Centers

http://www.ed.gov

references1
References
  • BuildingChoice.org http://www.buildingchoice.org
  • KSA-Plus Communications http://www.ksaplus.com
  • National Network of Partnership Schools http://www.partnershipschools.org
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Parent Engagement

Today’s Session

  • Self Assess
  • The Engagement Model
  • Secrets to Getting Parents Involved
  • Using Your Tool Kit
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Parent Engagement

http://www.flickspire.com/m/WalkTheTalk/LifeIsLikeCoffee

closing quote
Closing Quote

“Nothing has a stronger influence psychologically on their environment and especially on their children than the unlived life of the parent.”

--- Carl Jung, Swiss Psychologist