Ask a Mentor
By Sharon Delesbore
It is summertime, but I really want to keep in touch with parents whom I have built a rapport with through online learning. What can I share with them to keep their students “science conscious”?
As we continue to navigate through online learning, I agree that you do not want to lose ground with the connections you have made with your students’ parents/guardians. You have had a chance to engage with some whom you may not have had the opportunity to see in person or speak with by phone. Communicating online has been a beneficial outcome that has broadened parental involvement for some teachers, so I applaud your effort to keep the momentum positively going.
This summer, take advantage of the opportunity to increase your knowledge and implementation of technology tools you can use in the fall to involve your students in learning by practicing with your students’ parents. One idea is to begin your own electronic newsletter. An e-newsletter is more engaging than a simple e-mail because it communicates content visually as well as in writing. You can inform parents and guardians about happenings in the community that relate to science education. An online tool that could help you create a parent/student–friendly document is https://www.smore.com.
Take time to research the zoos, museums, and science centers in your area that may be conducting virtual tours and activities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Smithsonian Science Education Center can also provide you with curriculum, science news, and online learning games you can share with parents.
I believe that parents want to keep their kids active. At this time, we have all come to realize how essential scientists are. Keeping students science-conscious is about giving parents information about science and STEM topics to share with their kids. A newsletter with activity ideas gives parents teacher-recommended options that can motivate parents to keep their children's learning progressing.