Element 7: Teachers are actively engaged members of their profession and their wider community

I have had a plethora of experiences that have allowed me to contribute to the school community in a range of areas. Some areas worth noting include attending staff and safety meetings, co-organising inter-schools sports teams and uniform distribution, as well as assisting to maintain student achievement and attendance records.  I have also been fortunate enough to work with a group of students to write and develop a dramatic performance to be performed in front of the local community, including parents (Appendix 7.1). I have had limited experience in reporting to with parents, however I have some familiarity in informally communicating with parents as well as talking with community members who have visited practicum schools as required by the NSW Professional Teaching Standards (NSW Institute of teachers, 2003). In one instance I have had the chance to plan learning experiences with these members and I have also developed forthcoming relationships with teacher aids working in the class with me.

 I will welcome any occasion to talk with parents in the future as I understand the importance of linking a student’s home experience to their schooling experiences (McInerny & McInerny, 2006, p. 460). I will make an effort to involve myself in the wider school community in events occurring outside the classroom. I will continue to develop my communication skills and put this proficiency into use when communicating with community members.  

I need to keep an eye out for openings in the school community in which I can contribute my time or skills to. I need to actively search for ways to incorporate students learning with ties to the wider community, especially in the context of incorporating an Indigenous perspective in the curriculum.  

I believe a student will infinitely benefit when both parent and teacher are in communication when negotiating a child’s learning plan. I believe that making parents passionate about their child’s progress is significant to the child’s success (McInerny & McInerny, 2006, p. 460) and I believe that motivating parents (who are often constricted by their own commitments) can potentially be more challenging than motivating some students, but is well worth the time and effort, for all concerned. I believe that when parents and teachers work together it helps to ensure that children are safe, supported and successful on all counts.