In this post I’ll share Curriculum Night tips for elementary teachers, what to include in your Power Point presentations and a FREE Curriculum Night checklist to help you get started.
Curriculum Night Tips
When Curriculum Night rolls around most teachers have only been back for a couple of weeks and possibly even a few days. The back to school fatigue has completely set in and the thought of planning another open house might just as well put you over the top! Don’t worry though, because I’ve got you covered! In this post I’ll share tips, where to find editable Power Point templates, and a FREE checklist that will help get you ready so you’re calm, cool and collected on Curriculum Night!
Every school calls this open house by a different name, so let me clarify. I’m referring to the open house for parents where you share the curriculum their student will learn during the year. Of course we also take the opportunity when parents are in our classrooms to communicate additional things as well.
Begin building relationships with parents
We all know how important parent partnerships are and building relationships is key. Take a few minutes while you’re waiting to get started to welcome the parents that attend. For families that missed Meet the Teacher Night, introduce yourself and have copies of the parent forms and paperwork they missed.
As both a parent and a teacher, I can say for certain that parents just want to know who you are. They want to know what you are like as a person and how you will help their child succeed. Parents want to know who their child is spending each day with and if their child will by happy in your classroom.
Honestly as a parent, I want to know that I can openly communicate with the teacher and that he or she cares about my child. Parents want to know that their child’s academic needs will be met and that the teacher will be supportive in guiding their social and emotional development.
Personally invite parents to Curriculum Night
Email parents or send home a letter inviting parents to attend your open house. Have students make invitations for their parents or guardians. Ask each student to write a note to leave on their desk for their family to read.
Take the pressure off with a Power Point
Gather your thoughts and plan the information you will present to your parents. Make or purchase an editable Curriculum Night Power Point template that you can customize to fit your classroom. I don’t know about you, but I get nervous speaking to a room full of new-to-me parents. And when I’m nervous I forget things.
I created editable Curriculum Night Power Point templates that can be easily customized to add any info you want. Each style includes welcome slides that say Curriculum Night, Parent Night, and Back to School Night to match the open house name your school uses.
Use a Curriculum Night Checklist
Grab this FREE Curriculum Night checklist to help you plan your open house. This comprehensive checklist contains all the things to include in your presentation plus a list of things to do to get your classroom ready. Pop your email address in below and I’ll send this free checklist straight to your inbox! Having a checklist ensures that you are organized and prepared for a stress-free and successful open house.
Ready your room and have students clean their desks
I teach my students that our classroom is our home away from home and that we are a second grade family. On Curriculum Night I say that company is coming and when company comes we have to tidy up. We want our guests to feel welcome and to love our classroom as much as we do.
Clean off your desk and put away piles. Have students help you straighten desks, bookshelves and anything that needs it. Pass out Lysol wipes to wipe down desks and have students “clean their room” by straightening inside their desks. Display textbooks, workbooks and any curriculum other your school uses.
Display Student Work
Make sure every child has something hanging up. I display these colorful goal setting kids that we make during the first week of school. Parents love the self-portrait aspect and are tickled to read the goals their child has set.
Place name tags on each desk
Names are a powerful thing. Seeing their student’s name in the room lets parents know their child is a valued member of your classroom family. Most elementary teachers start off the year with name tags on each desk, but if you haven’t already, make one for open house. I like to have the child’s name in as many places in the room as possible.
Get parents involved
Provide volunteer sign-up sheets for both help from home and classroom volunteers. Set up a Giving Tree area so parents are aware of the items you need and those you will use all year. This blog post has a FREE Giving Tree template so be sure to head over and grab that.
Then… take a breath because you’ve got this! Use these Curriculum Night tips and sign up for the checklist so you can be calm, cool, and collected on Curriculum Night.
Save these tips on your Pinterest boards so you have them when you plan!
Here’s to a successful open house and a fantastic new school year!