WARNING! This assignment could possibly cause tears, laughter, tug of heart strings and many more feelings that you never thought you would feel for students you have only known for a few days.
Okay! Now that that tid bit of information is out of the way, lets get to the good stuff... homework for parents! This wonderful idea was given to me by my newest team member and I absolutely love it and will be doing it every year from now on. The assignment is very simple and I'm sure some of you might already do this. As a team, we sent a letter home to the parents on the second day of school asking them, in a million words or less, to send in a letter telling us all about their child. I already have that section on my student's information cards that says, "If you would like me to know anything about your child please tell me here," so I thought the letters would be similar to those responses. BOY WAS I WRONG!
Almost all of my parents returned their letters (I gave them a week to complete them) and they were beyond moving. I read them in one night and some had me laughing out loud, some had me tearing up, a lot had me smiling and a good majority had me saying "Oh my gosh." There are things in those letters that these kids would have never told me because they were too shy or I might have found out later on in the year by circumstances popping up. All the letters I got were at least one whole page and they were some of the most heartfelt and beautiful things I've ever read. I wish these kids knew how much they are loved. Even though these students are "my kids" since the second I see their name on my list, this made them all the more mine and I just wanted to protect them and make sure they had the best year ever. I loved them all the more because of what their parents said and hopefully I'll remember these letters when we're having a rough day! LOL
Some of you might be thinking, "this would not happen at my school" but I work at a Title 1 school and got incredible support with this assignment. I think it really helped to show the parents that I do care and am not just a passing person in their child's life. If you would like to do this as well, I've attached a copy of the letter we sent home. Just fill in your information where needed :o) I hope you have as wonderful an outcome as I did!