What Report Cards Don't Tell Us as Parents

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  • By Amy Spiers
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What Report Cards Don't Tell Us as Parents

Here we are in the first of three reporting seasons in Ontario. As a teacher, I have spent my fair share of time writing and agonizing over reports that were sent home to students and families. Read on to find out what report cards don't say and why we should celebrate kids for the superheroes they are.

Celebrate Kids for the Superheroes They Are!

Report cards can cause us to become hypersensitive to our child's abilities and productive output. I always caution parents, however, to be aware of all that these pieces of paper don't say about the kids. As teachers, we try to provide the most accurate and honest representation with the the template we are "volun-told" to use. In sitting down with parents in conferences each year, I always made time to talk about the 'stuff' I couldn't fit into those neat and tidy boxes.


Report Cards Don't Tell Us...

  • How your child has been practicing his ability to listen to his inner voice as well as the voices of others
  • How your child is learning to self-regulate in times of frustration by using a variety of strategies
  • How your child is learning that small changes can make a difference in her life and that of others
  • How your child is learning to show respect for others, even if they are different from herself
  • How your child has been working on good habits like turn-taking, waiting to speak and including others during group time
  • How your child refused to give up even when the task felt impossible
  • How your child came to school upset and was able to turn his day around on his own
  • ...so much more!


Learning comes in all shapes and sizes, just like superheroes. Areas in which your child has endeavored and persevered may not fit into the brown envelope. This certainly does not mean they don't deserve the recognition.

So look for those little (or giant) successes in your superheroes. Ask the teacher for some examples of 'wins' she/he may not have been able to fit on the official document. Let's celebrate all kinds of learning and gains, not just the ones that fit into neat and tidy boxes.


All the best,





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