student participation

5 Ways to Support Non-Traditional Families

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Students want to fit in, and teachers can help students from every background and circumstance feel just like everyone else with a plan to support non-traditional families.

Supporting non-traditional families has nothing to do with being politically correct, but is about the realization that traditional families comprised of married parents and their children living in one house are no longer the norm. Teachers and administrators want their students’ families involved in school life and the lives of their students, and the following ideas may help to engage the students and the important adults in their lives. Are you doing everything you can to support non-traditional families?

1. Ditch Parent-Only Events

support non-traditional familiesFather-daughter dances or mother-son game nights may seem like good ideas, but do not support non-traditional families. These types of events may actually emphasize the differences between families instead of creating a sense of community. An invitation for students to bring the best dancer or gamer in their families gives them the opportunity to attend with anyone from their family. Grandparents’ Day could become Family Day honoring two special people in each student’s family, or the Mothers’ Day Tea could be a Ladies’ Tea and open to anyone with a maternal role in the student’s life.

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Sue Hamilton

Sue is a Pennsylvania native and graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where she earned a B.S. degree in English. She worked as a radio newscaster and newspaper reporter before becoming a paralegal in a small civil law firm. Reading is her passion and Sue is an avid volunteer with her community library.

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