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Effective communication, both within the classroom and the community around it, is the
most critical aspect of maximising learning for students in the primary school setting.

In addition, families are an essential key to most peoples lives and are vital for
learning and development. Smith and Laws (1992) had suggested that teachers must
coordinate communication with parents and the community to help maximise students
learning. Drawing on my experiences, I have a clearer understanding of Bronfenbrenners
social ecological map. To elaborate, Bronfenbrenners model acknowledges that humans
do not develop in isolation but in relation to family, school, community and society
(McDonald, 2010, p.68). Within the ecological map, Bronfenbrenner described the
microsystem as face-to-face settings (Harms, 2008, p.12) or the social experiences that
have had an impact on my learning. Therefore, educators need to communicate with
students parents to understand what occurs at home and how that influences students
learning. Smith and Laws (1992) had emphasised this idea, by suggesting that effective
communication between teachers and parents results in greater parent participation,
increased student achievement and more positive interactions between parents, teacher
and the school. Drawing on my experiences, Ive learnt that parents wish to receive
information about their children in some interactive form. In regards to this, personal
touch is the most effective component of parent and teacher communication (Smith &
Laws, 1992). Smith and Laws (1992) had recognised that teachers need to make
themselves accessible to parents, so that they have the opportunity to discuss any
concerns relating to their child. Furthermore, teachers can communicate effectively with
parents through clear and written comments that are meaningful to parents (Smith &
Laws, 1992). Drawing on my classroom experiences, teachers were frequently writing
letters/emails home, to inform the parents on the progress and the development of their
children. In the same way, teachers and parents can communicate through interviews to

help maximise students learning. Wolf and Stephens (as cited in Smith & Laws, 1992) had
claimed that interviews facilitate an open exchange of information before concluding
with a strategy to help support the students learning and development. Ultimately, it is
imperative that teachers communicate effectively with parents, as parents and families
are recognised as the childrens first and most influential educators (Harrison & Murray,
as cited in Bowes, Grace & Hayes, 2012, p.122).