Many preschools in Singapore hold Parent-Teacher Conferences (PTC) during the year, and some schools may conduct them twice a year or more.
These PTCs happen most often at the mid-point of the school year and at the end, as your child moves up to the next class level. PTCs may be in-person conferences, or, more common recently, online through a video call.
These meetings serve as a touchpoint between parents and teachers, and should be seen as an opportunity for two-way communication. It is important for parents to take this chance to clarify any issues and follow up on their children’s development and progress.
Questions You Can Ask Your Children’s Preschool Teachers During the PTC
How has my child progressed since the last Parent-Teacher Conference?
If there were any points of discussion at the last PTC, it would be good to revisit them and see if things have changed since then.
This could be about academic progress, socio-emotional progress, or any other relevant aspect. There may be developmental milestones that your child has reached that you can take it on for a discussion together.
Remember, as always, that it takes two hands to clap in order for the parent-teacher conversation to work both ways and communicate effectively with one another. The teachers depend on you as well to let them know if your child has made any progress at home in an aspect that they should be updated on.
How does my child relate to peers in school?
A great deal of our children’s development has to do with their socio-emotional skills, and we can see this clearly as they interact with their peers in school. As some of our children may not have siblings of similar ages at home, school is a wonderful way for our children to learn how to socialise with other kids – and it also means that it is a part of their development that you may not be privy to at home.
It is also good to find out from the respective class teachers how your child is handling interpersonal relationships in school. Maybe they have a best friend you would like to know about, or perhaps your child is struggling with finding the best way to share toys and books. These are all important things to find out.
What do the assessment rubrics mean for my child?
Most preschools in Singapore include portfolios as well as assessment rubrics showing achievement goals like ‘competent’, ‘proficient’, and ‘developing’. As different schools may use a variety of terms, parents should clarify with teachers what each term really means and the significance of each aspect.
In this way, you can gain a clearer picture of what milestones your child has reached, and which they need more help with. It is good to keep in mind that every child reaches milestones at different times and pace, and therefore it can be counter-productive to compare these achievements between students.
Rather, ask the teachers if your child’s growth is typical, what particular strengths and weaknesses your child has, and if they feel there are specific concerns they should highlight to you.
This is why you should not necessarily be alarmed if your child has several ticks in the ‘developing’ box; this could be normal for a child of their age.
Many preschools in Singapore have digitalised portfolios for ease of reference, so you may receive digital copies through email or the school’s app. In Kiddiwinkie Schoolhouse, the LittleLives app allows parents to view comprehensive portfolios and information so that you are always updated on their child’s progress.
How can I help you support my child at home?
It is vital that parents and teachers are partners in a child’s growth. Just as you would expect that teachers continue the good work of instructing your child in school, the same applies for parents back at home. Furthermore, this question helps to assure teachers that you are on the same page as them.
Finding out how you can follow up with learning at home will help ensure that there is continuity for your child, giving them a sense that learning takes place not only in school but also at home.
It is also important to remember that updates should not happen only twice a year through the PTC. Parents and teachers should keep in close contact through communications books or apps, which are widely used by many preschools in Singapore.
Is there anything else you think I should know, or anything you would like me to tell you?
This last question leaves the door open for teachers to add anything else they think is needful. There may be another issue that they would want to discuss with you, and an open-ended question could help them to address this.
At Kiddiwinkie Schoolhouse, open communication with parents is of utmost importance as we journey together with you and your child.