Monday, September 09, 2013

Remind101: A New Approach to Parent Communication

When I started teaching over 10 years ago, just about every teacher I knew wrote a classroom newsletter that came home in the form of a piece of paper.  I am fairly certain that a good percentage of those newsletters ended up in a crumpled wad of recyclable material at the bottom of most kids’ backpacks.  To ensure that I was reaching my entire audience, I decided to use a smarter and far more revolutionary way of communicating with all of my students’ parents: email.  I mean, what parent doesn’t have an extra 5-10 minutes in their day to read an email lovingly crafted by that brand new, 20-something teacher who wants to tell you every single detail about what is happening during your child’s school day?

Well, I am a parent now myself, and I’ve got news for you…I do not have time to read all of the newsletters that I receive via email.  Because not only do I get newsletters from my kids’ schools - I get them from the religious school, sports teams and enrichment classes too.  Sound familiar?  Of course,  I don’t want to sound ungrateful for the communication.  I am SO grateful.  I just do not have the extra time in my day to read them all!  

Enter Remind101.  Where have you been all of my teaching career!?  This is a brilliant, web-based service with an extremely functional smart-phone app that allows me to text my students' parents, without ever exchanging a phone number.  Now  I can keep the lines of communication open with  bite-sized updates about what is happening in my classroom.  Quick to send - quick to read. Now I can be sure that my message is being read because it's only 140 characters, and even the busiest of people can find the time to read that!

If you are still sending email newsletters, I highly recommend making the switch. Busy parents like me will thank you!  

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