This evening, Liam and I will be off to our first parents evening. Dexter started school this past September and from what we can tell he has settled in really well. He’s a right royal pain in the backside to get ready in the morning and occasionally, we will get to the school gates and he won’t want to go in, but once he’s there, he’s happy. He Comes bouncing out at home time, excited to tell us what letter he learnt that day and what he had for school dinners. We’ve even been invited in for an afternoon where they let the parents come in in sit with their child for an hour and see how they learn and what they do.
I’m confident that this is totally the right school for him and seeing him recognising letters and words and hearing him talking about his friends has made me so proud of him… But tonight is parents evening… and I have no idea what to expect. Is he that same boy when he’s out of our sight? Is he a bit of git for the teachers like he often is for us or he some sort of angel because we aren’t there? Does he put his hands up to answer things? Is he confident in joining in? Well, with him being our first born, Liam and I have absolutely no clue what to expect… so I’ve asked a few fellow bloggers with older children if they could give me a comment on what to expect.
- Don’t expect to start on time! They are always running late!! – The Money Whisperer
- Expect to feel rushed – they only have 10-15 minutes per family so don’t go in armed with loads of questions. Have a couple of general areas to talk about – you can always book more time for more in-depth conversations. – Mummy’s Gin Fund
- We are always invited to attend about ten minutes before the meeting starts. Our children’s books/art etc are left out for us to look at and read before we go in, which is really lovely. – The Daisy Pages
- As a teacher, our first parents evenings would always be about how they are settling in, friendship groups, social/emotional type conversations rather than being particularly academic ones (unless, of course, the parents asked or there were some concerns) – Sophies Nursery
- Expect to hear the same conversation every year about your child. – The Birth and Baby Academy
- Expect to feel super proud of your independent little learner and rather amazed at their work! Baby Budgeting
- Expect to feel like a giant as you have to balance on a teeny tiny chair. My husband fell off his. Loudly. – Watching you grow
- Expect to wait a bit longer than you anticipated and to hear very positive things said about your child, or positive spins at least. Then expect to hear pretty much the same things over and over, until your child reaches high school! – Reclusive Fox
- Expect to hear a lot about the core subjects, of Maths and English, but do ask about the others. I found particularly as the kids progress that attainment in Music, Science, Art, etc got a little lost in the pursuit of great SATS. –Kiddy Charts
- It isn’t uncommon to come away wondering if they are actually talking about your child! My daughter is a loud, crazy silly girl at home but apparently doesn’t say boo to a goose at school and is very shy and ‘watchful’. (also learn the lingo “a very confident child” seems to translate as a right royal pain in the backside and an “enthusiastic contributor to class discussions” means – never shuts up! Wild Mama Wild Tribe
- Expect to sit on a child’s chair for a long time. If you’re lucky you might get coffee. You’ll be here a while.
When we went the teachers actually nearly missed us out and got up to leave because they didn’t know we were still in the waiting room. – Dad Geek
- Expect what is known as the “poop sandwich” (guess which word I’ve censored). They will start with telling you something good about your child and you’ll feel slightly smug. Then they tell you the bad things about your kid and you’ll start to feel a bit upset or disappointed. But then they’ll tell you something good again, which leaves you slightly confused. Household Money Saving
- Ours was simply to reassure us that our son had settled in well. He cries most mornings so they wanted to make sure we knew he was happy and making friends. They told us he’s stronger with numbers than words (which we already knew) and that’s he was a very well behaved boy. It was brief but lovely Lamb and Bear
- I find it is just a reassuring meeting to let you know that they ‘get’ your child. I found that I didn’t get much info but they spoke about how they had settled in and about their character to reassure me that they understood my child and knew how best to help them learn – The Mummy Adventure.
- It’s worth bringing questions if there is anything you want to ask. You don’t get very long so plan to get the most out of it. We got to look through my daughter’s workbooks and found out what they thought we should be working on with her at home. Counting to Ten
A huge thank you to all of the bloggers that helped put this post together. I feel a lot more prepared now. Is this your first time too? Maybe some of these answers will be helpful to you. Let me know if you have any other suggestions. Especially if you’re a teacher. It’s always good to hear the other side of things.