Bright Ideas: Making Connections With Families

Simple ways to encourage family engagement

Editor’s Note: Sabrina Edwards has worked in Education for 10 years. She has a love for reading and shares that passion with her students often. She uses the digital version of Scholastic News in her virtual classroom to engage students and help them practice their reading skills.

Prior to Day 1

Before the first day of school, I like to create and send out a video to families introducing myself. I typically share my interests and things I think students at that age will be interested in. I also make time to reach out to families to get to know them and their needs as a family. You can set up phone calls or email a survey. Write down notes that you can bring up later in conversation. For example, if a student has a pet goldfish named Shark, ask them later how Shark is doing. 


Send out birthday cards! Kids love getting mail and this simple gesture can make a big difference, especially in a remote setting.  


Send a quick text or email to parents when their child has done something positive in class. Even the smallest thing will make the day of that child and parent.

Involve Families in Learning 

Scholastic News provides a Family Engagement Letter in English and in Spanish (en español) that you can download and send home to your families. You can also use this special Scholastic News at Home letter template to have students summarize their favorite articles and share new thoughts and ideas inspired by their readings.