Thursday, October 2, 2014

Hosting A Successful Curriculum Night

 Hi all. This is 5 for Friday with a twist.
Hosting A Successful Curriculum Night
Here in Florida, we are not following Common Core. Our state voted against it. We have our own standards now. 
We also have a brand new test. The test is called Florida State Assessment (FSA). 
Third grade is a mandatory retention year in our state. The kids don't pass the test, they don't go on to 4th grade. PERIOD. 
With that being said, parents needed to be informed of all the changes. There are MAJOR changes to the curriculum AND the test.
Our 3rd grade team decided to host a curriculum night. We desperately wanted to get out all this information to them as soon as possible. 
With some strategic planning and a lot of finger crossing, we were able to pull it off. It went GREAT.
I'm sharing with you how to have the same successful night. 
FREE FOOD! Have food and they will come! Promise. I teach at a Title I school and parent involvement is super low. Not on this night. 
We kept it simple. Hot dogs and drinks. 
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 Offer free child care. Parents can't use the excuse, I have no one to watch the kids.
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Do a mock run through. Step by step. We did it at least twice. Make adjustments right then and there. I'm telling you, this was the biggest help. You are less likely to leave anything out AND you aren't nervous about now knowing what to say. 
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Offer a raffle. Everyone loves to win something. Advertise that there will be prizes and they will come. We had backpacks full of school supplies and gift cards. 
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 Offer a variety of times for parents. Parents work different hours. Having a meeting at 5 will work for some, but not others. We hosted two sessions. One from 5-6 and one from 6-7. This also help to limit the excuses of not being able to make it. 
Are you in Florida? If so, here is a PowerPoint for your very own curriculum night!It compares the FCAT to FSA. It explains to the parents what is expected of the students. It also gives helpful tips on how the parents can help their child succeed.