ERIC Number: ED454207
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
New Teachers Communicating Effectively with Low-Income Urban Parents.
McDermott, Peter C.; Rothenberg, Julia J.
This study examined what low income parents perceived about their involvement in their children's education and what teachers needed to know about teaching in urban schools. The study also investigated whether, given explicit instruction and practice, prospective teachers would positively change their perceptions about interacting with low income African American and Latino parents. First, researchers used focus groups to elicit the perceptions of low income African American and Latino parents about their children's education. Overall, the urban parents often felt alienated and unwelcome at school events, though they indicated that some teachers, whom they respected, communicated frequently with them in a variety of ways (e.g., notes home, telephone calls, newsletters, and home visits). Using this information, researchers integrated into an undergraduate elementary method course a variety of learning activities to improve undergraduates' skills at communicating with urban parents. A pre-post survey of 30 undergraduate preservice elementary teachers who participated in the methods program indicated that there was significant growth in their knowledge of how to conduct family conferences, show authentic interest in family involvement, and communicate in various ways with urban families. Appended are: Percentage Rankings of Students' Answers to Survey Items, the Rubric for Parent Story, and the "Family Newsletter." (Contains 20 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: Black Students, Blacks, Communication Skills, Consciousness Raising, Cultural Awareness, Cultural Differences, Elementary Education, Higher Education, Hispanic American Students, Hispanic Americans, Interpersonal Communication, Low Income Groups, Parent Participation, Parent Teacher Cooperation, Preservice Teacher Education, Student Teacher Attitudes, Student Teachers, Urban Schools
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A