With the increased use of technology in schools, parents often feel like they can’t see what their child is learning.
As parents we know the universal answer to “What did you learn today?” We know that the answer is “nothing”, to which we could reply, take out your book and show me what you have been working on.
Now with work being completed in Google Apps or Microsoft Office 365, some of that work feels less accessible to parents as it is saved in the cloud.
It used to be that parents could look at their child’s school book and feel like they had a sense of how their child was progressing. Now with work being completed on a computer, often that work is hidden behind a username and password.
You don’t need to set up parent portals or buy expensive tools
Schools can easily empower parents to be involved in the learning process as well as improve communication between school and home by simply teaching the parents how to log into their students Google Drive or OneDrive account.
When you do this, I would advise that you provide three aspects to your communication:
1. How to log into their child’s account.
This could be as easy as sharing an information sheet with images showing them which sites to go to and where to click. You are welcome to download our Google Apps Login and Microsoft Office 365 Login pages for parents.
If you are using Google Apps, your parents should also using the multiple users in chrome setup to keep their different logins separate.
2. Explain to the parents that this is not a tool for them to spy on their kids
Often when I take parents through these steps, their eyes light up and they ask, so I can log in at any time during the day and see what they are up to. The answer I give is, “technically yes. But you might want to consider the impact this will have on your child if they feel like you are constantly looking over their shoulder. In addition to this, the teacher probably wouldn’t like the disruption this might cause.”
[bctt tweet=”Download these parents guides with step by step instructions on how to log into Google Drive and OneDrive”]
It is always best if the parent sits with their child at home and use the school work as a conversation starter. They can ask questions about the work done, who they worked with etc. By doing this, the child doesn’t feel spied on, the parent is empowered to speak with their child about the work and everyone benefits.
3. Explain to the parents that this is not the only way that their child learns.
Parents need to be aware that students learn through a variety of methods and that they shouldn’t be alarmed if they sit with their child, look at their online drive and see no new work produced.
If you have any questions about this process, leave a comment below.