Hearing a lot about student-led conferences? Wondering how they are different from parent/teacher conferences? Which one should you use?
Typical parent-teacher conferences have the teacher (teachers) and family members present (mom, dad, grandma, aunt, etc). The teacher does a lot of talking, sharing, of grades, what is being taught and observations about the student's learning. The student is not usually present at all, or if they are present, they are very passive.
Student led conferences are just the opposite. The student is active, doing a lot of the talking about what they are learning, their own observations of their learning and what their grades are.
The big difference between student-led conferences and parent-teacher conferences is that the student owns the learning in the student-led conference. It becomes more about what the student learned than what the teacher was teaching.
I highlighted some of the differences below.
So...which one is best? Should everyone be using student-led conferences? Well... I think the answer is BOTH!
They both have their time and place (in my opinion). I like to use the official conference time for student-led conferences (in my district it's at the end of the first marking period, almost 9 weeks into the school year). It's a great time for my students to show off their learning, how we do things in our classroom and share their goals for the rest of the school year.
I use parent/teacher conferences all year long. Honestly, as soon as I have a concern I set up a meeting (on the phone or in person). I don't like to wait until report card time - more than 25% of the school year is already done by then!
Parent/teacher conferences are pretty straight forward. Interested in student-led conferences, but don't know where to start? Check back in a few weeks to see how we do them in our classroom!
I'm a mom, wife, and teacher that loves to read, hang out with my family, and learn. I love to use our blog to share ideas with others and to help keep me learning!