Sunday, 3 July 2016

Let's Talk About Parents...
No, I'm not talking about gathering around a lunch table in the staff lounge with your "best friend teaching buddies" to talk about "that" family.  I want to talk about the importance of effective communication with your students' families.  If there is one thing I have learned over my years of teaching, it's the importance of parent communication!  
When the new Common Core State Standards arrived, if you were anything like me, you may have read them, and thought "Huh? What in the world does this mean?" and "How am I ever going to be able to teach to these standards?" Yep, I was intimidated by the expectations set for my 8 year olds, and was preparing for a world of:
 After that fear sunk in, came the fear of, "How am I ever going to be able to send this stuff home for homework and expect parents to help their children with this?"

I know by now we have all seen something to this effect:

But, there was no way I was going to let Common Core math get me or my students' parents!  After spending hours learning the basis and strategies used to teach the concepts used with Common Core math, I fell in LOVE!  Yep, that's right!  I loved that we were actually teaching real skills to students, not just an algorithm to solve a problem. 

Now that I was sold on this new awesomeness, I knew I had to educate my student's parents on the importance of the new skills I'd be teaching their students. That's when I began creating home school communication letters with a no-prep game to send home with my kiddo's.  These letters introduce new concepts, skills, and vocabulary.  

My student's parents love getting these letters, and honestly, I have had ZERO complaints about Common Core math from them.  My students are able to complete their homework and practice the skills at home, and that makes my teacher heart happy.  

If you teach math using Engage New York or Eureka math, I've created these home school communication letters for 2nd and 3rd grade (sold individually or bundled)  found here:

Karen is busy working on letters for 1st grade that will hopefully be ready for you coming this August.  

If you want to get a closer look at these letters, check out the 2nd grade freebie, found in our Freebie section or here: 

Any questions on this subject are welcome, please just comment below and Karen and I will be happy to respond.

Until next time, 


Graphics from:


  1. Kelie,

    Aren't you happy the hubbub related to CCSS has died down? I am! Fear of the unknown or new surely can get people riled up, can't it?

    Thanks for participating in my first ever Second Best Ideas Linky Party! Look for it on August 2, next month!

    Happy Summer!


    1. I surely am! Looking forward to next month as well :)

  2. Kelie,

    I have been looking at your 2nd grade bundle package and it looks amazing. This will be the first year our school uses Eureka Math and I'm nervous and excited at the same time. Are the vocabulary posters that come with the bundled package all in black and white or are they in color?


    1. Hi Katie- The posters are in black and white. What I like to do is print them on colored paper (like Astrobrights brand). It makes a really nice bulletin board this way and still saves on ink :)

    2. Also, I forgot to mention I LOVE Engage New York math. I know it does not have all the "frills" as other publishers might have, but the kids really learn to understand the concepts of math. It may be a little rough to get used to in the beginning (the lessons can be long, and some of the concepts are a little different than what we may be used to teaching), but stick with it and I promise you will love it!!!

    3. Thank-you so much! I love your bundles and can't wait to purchase and use them! Great idea to print on colored paper! I forgot to mention it's my first year in 2nd grade (I spent 8 in 3rd) as well, so I'm glad we are starting with Eureka this year and not next year, like grades 3-5. I will share your website with my colleagues, so they can get the great resources as well! Thanks for all you do! Good luck with the start of school!