Talking to your child about report cards and grades

As you look over the report with your child it's important to keep in mind that report cards, though important, offer only one window on your child’s learning experiences at AISB.

We invite you to consider the following:

Help your child understand that grades are not the most important thing:

The comments section of the report provides deeper insight into what your child is learning and doing in class, the successes and challenges he or she is encountering, and suggestions that might help your child learn more effectively. It is important to remember that many students suffer from grade anxiety, which can interfere with their learning. Focusing first and foremost on the letter grade your child has received can exacerbate this kind of anxiety, and can direct your child’s attention away from what matters most. Try to keep the focus on learning rather than the external measures of it.

Take this opportunity to start – or continue – a dialogue about learning.

Ask your child what she or he enjoys about learning—what makes learning most effective, what sorts of ideas are most engaging—and what implications these strengths and preferences have for his or her life choices. Grading measures only some aspects of a child’s intellectual and personal growth; there are others, not easily quantified but well worth recognizing. It’s worth asking your children how they feel they have grown lately, and about challenges they have faced and how they have met them. Their answers might surprise you.

Ask your child about what we can do — school and parents, working together as a team — to support his or her learning.

Student academic success is closely linked to a strong and cooperative relationship between home and school. This relationship can look very different for students of different ages and personalities, and depends also on family circumstances. Some children appreciate more parental involvement in their schooling than others do. And as students grow older and more independent, parent involvement -- though still important -- evolves considerably.

Report cards are an important way to help our students understand themselves as learners, recognize their accomplishments, and find new direction for the future. As we conclude this quarter we congratulate our students on their many successes in learning and growing.