Visiting Student’s Homes – home visit
School is just around the corner and you may be asking yourself if you have the time and energy to make these home visits. From Kindergarten to 8th grade home visits can be tremendously important, especially when a student is new to your class room. Some teachers like to do 3 in a day in the weeks before school starts. One after breakfast, one after lunch and one after dinner. Others spread them out over the summer. Try not to put too many into a day. It may tire you out and you won’t be at your best. Remember to jot a couple things down after you leave because it can be hard if you’ve visited 20 plus homes!
What does a home visit look like?
A one to two hour visit at a students home, between meals. This way there is not so much pressure on the parents. Children are usually so excited for their teacher to come over! It makes them feel special! Be ready for hugs, seeing your student’s bedroom, favorite toys and pets. One hour is a nice amount of time, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself there longer because you are having so much fun!
Some teachers set a reminder on their phone to go off to help remind them to get going to their next appointment. Be ready to answer the many questions parents might have, but try to stay focused on speaking with your student and letting them show you around.
What am I looking for?
A home visit is a way to find out more information about a student so that you can better support and connect with them. These are some things to observe that may help you facilitate a great teacher-student and teacher-parent connection in the future.
- Was the student very outgoing when you visited or shy?
- Do they have siblings?
- Do they have 1, 2 or more parents?
- Do they have a calm and nurturing home environment?
- Is there a lot of media present in the form of video games, TV or movies?
- What are some of there favorite toys and hobbies?
Remember, this is not about judging the home of a student. It is about knowing how to support and connect with them. Many experienced teachers report that home visits helped them connect to a student during class by bringing up a hobby like baseball, their pet rabbits or something else they are really into. Many teachers also say that they have a better relationship with the parents of students that they’ve visited.
Make the Time!
In the long run, you’ll be glad you did it. Even if you have to do some after school has started, it will help you connect with the whole family. You may have these students in your class for years, so start off on the right foot!