5 Questions to Ask at Open House

Schools are already busy preparing for open house. It’s a time for teachers to provide you with an overview of their class, but it’s also a chance for you to ask any questions you may have. It’s held at the beginning of the school year so you can get the lay of the land–meet the teachers, see the classrooms, and learn about class expectations. This event can set the tone for the year and establish strong school-home connections. This is a time to get the big picture, rather than address individual student concerns. Schedule a separate meeting with the teacher if you have specific needs for your child.

You won’t have time to ask a laundry list of questions, so prepare a few pertinent ones ahead of time. The questions you ask should reflect your desire to be on the same page as the teachers and understand how they conduct their classrooms.

To make the most of open house, here are 5 general questions to help you start the year off right.

What instructional strategies do you use?
Verbal instruction, flipped classroom, project-based learning, and game-based learning are a few different ways teachers instruct. Does the teacher use a combination to support different learning types? This will help you understand how your child will be taught and can give you insight into what’s most effective for your child.

What can I do to support my child’s academic success at home?
School-home connection is important in facilitating and reinforcing consistent, academic learning.

What are additional resources to supplement learning at home?
Are there online learning games or particular websites that provide the same explanations or strategies as the teacher uses in class? This may not only help support your child, but may also give you a refresher course too!

How much homework should my child expect to receive daily?
This can help you gauge your child’s overall daily schedule and provide a balance with extracurricular activities. Follow up questions to this are: What types of assistance do you provide if my child doesn’t completely grasp the assignment? Are you available before or after school to tutor? Is there alternative tutoring available?

How do you communicate with parents?
Find out what is the best way to contact the teacher if you need to. Does the teacher use an online program, school portal, or can he or she provide you with an email address? Will you get regular emails or notes in your child’s backpack to watch out for?

Open house is a time for you to learn. Take advantage of this opportunity by identifying what you want to find out from the teachers and school. Whether you have questions or not, it’s beneficial to attend so you can see where your children will spend their time learning and developing. It will also help you begin a relationship with the teachers so you can support your children’s academic success at home.

For more ideas on how to start the year off right, check out 6 Must-Know Tips to Start the School Year Strong.

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