Nearly every child wants his mom or dad to be involved in school. If only it were so easy for nearly every parent. Here are ways to help out beyond lunch duty.*
Can you spend some of your day at school?
Before volunteering to help in at the school, review your child’s school policy or ask a few questions:
- Are you permitted to bring siblings?
- Do you need proof of government-mandated clearances?
- Are parents permitted to volunteer in their child’s classrooms, or do you have to volunteer in other classrooms?
- Who oversees parent volunteers? Is it better to offer services through the teacher or the parent organization?
- Will you volunteering in the classroom distract your student or benefit him?
For parents who can volunteer in the classroom
After making sure you’re able to volunteer at school, here are a few ideas you can suggest you help in the classroom. A second set of hands is usually so helpful, but when teachers are put on the spot, it’s not easy for them to remember what they’ll need. By suggesting ideas similar to these, they’ll know what you’re interested in and how you feel you can best help.
- Review math facts using flashcards
- Review site words with flashcards
- Listen to students read aloud one-to-one
- Help with an art project
- Assist during computer or technology time
- Offer a lesson in your culture, background, or traditions that will teach children something new
- Use your talents to help direct a class play or musical assembly
- Assist with science experiments
- Help out while the kids are working on a big project
For parents who can volunteer at school but not in the classroom:
- Ask if another teacher in a different grade needs assistance in any of the areas listed above
- Make copies on the school copier or laminate
- Create school bulletin boards to show off student work
- Volunteer in the library (usually a weekly volunteering opportunity) or the art classroom
- Help direct the school play or talent show
- Assist at recess or run a running club during that time
- Sponsor an optional book club for students who are interested in meeting during “free” time (often recess)
- Assist in the school office while the school secretary is at a meeting or at lunch
- Help with the morning arrival or afternoon dismissal
- Assist with your school’s parent organization during events such as pretzel sales or field day
- Chaperone a field trip
How you can help your school from home
- Coordinate the monthly book order
- Cut small projects from paper for a future art project
- Offer to mark quizzes (like math drills and spelling tests)
- Research topics the students will learn about and provide added information to the teacher for her lessons
No matter how you assist, let your children know you care and are wanting to be a part of their education.
*Hey, lunch duty is awesome. More power to you! Thanks for volunteering!