Parenting, Teaching, Technology

5 Tips For Increasing Parent Adoption With Technology

Technology outside

 

Educational technology is on the rise, and it seems like there is a new app developed weekly that promises to reinvent your classroom. Kids are usually excited when their teacher approaches them with a new tool, app, or game, but it’s often difficult to convince parents to participate.  So, how do we go about this?

Make Sure Your Administration Has Your Back

Before you make any concrete plans, be sure to approach your district administration and inform them of your ideas.  I’m sure your superintendent will be thrilled to see you embracing technology, but if you don’t keep them in the loop and a parent calls or complains, you will be in the wrong.  We don’t want that! Another perk is that if the administration knows what you’re doing in your school, they may make a point to announce it in a district newsletter, spreading the word for you.  They might also be more willing to provide funding for apps or programs with a cost.

Hook Them From the Get-Go

Early in the school year, like Open House or Back to School Night, is the ideal time to share your technology plans with parents.  Send home a notice before-hand indicating that you will be showing how to log in, view, and engage with their child’s online school presence.  Sometimes just a walk-through is all it takes for parents to realize the benefits of school technology.

Another option is writing up step-by-step instructions for using the app, blog, or website, and sending a paper copy home to all parents at the start of the school year.  You can also post this on your school’s website, directing parents to your own class’ page. This is a good idea to do anyway because we know all parents won’t attend the Open House event.   

Assure Parents Of Their Child’s Safety

One of the biggest concerns, understandably, is the safety of their child’s online identity.  What can they see and who can see them? Most apps that would be used for educational purposes have easy to use parental controls, so make sure parents know how to use them.  Also, reassure them that those controls will be on during class time. Maybe your school’s iPads don’t even let students access the web and are only used for apps. Just make sure to be totally transparent with all safety features, your vision for the usage of whatever platform you are using, and how the parents can help.

Emphasize The Benefits

Parent Technology Schools

Explain to parents why you are using this platform.  Highlight the benefits of what you are using, and emphasize how great it will be for the parents.  Apps like ClassDojo allow teachers and parents to be in contact all day, letting parents see how their child is doing and also being informed of important announcements or assignments. The Script app allows parents to pay school fees over an app in seconds, and ensures that paperwork such as permission slips, important forms, and announcement handouts don’t get buried in their child’s locker never to be seen again. Even if you aren’t incorporating apps, but instead having a teacher/class website it is still important to show parents how they can be involved in order to maximize their child’s success.

Be Sure to Follow Up

You can usually see who has logged on, or at least see how many views it has gotten, depending on the platform. Follow up with parents who haven’t interacted, reiterating what you did at the beginning of the year.  Leave a note for parents when their child produces an impressive assignment, which might make them eager to check in more. A great benefit to these educational tools is the ease at which you can contact parents, so don’t be afraid to.  Parents will never complain about too much contact or information on their student!

 

Read our previous blog post discussing how to create a culture of efficiency at your school here

To learn more about Script and how to streamline your K12 school processes such as field trips, aftercare, parent purchases, digital permission slips, please feel free to book a demo at www.scriptapp.com

This article is written by Lauren Bubb, an English Teacher at Frankfort-Schuyler Central Schools

To reach Lauren, please contact here.